Burnsville, Minn. (April 8, 2021) – The Minnesota Corn Research and Promotion Council (MCR&PC) and Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) announced a commitment of $1 million to a future state biofuels infrastructure grant program. The program, to be administered by the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, would expand access to higher blends of ethanol in the state.
“Minnesota has long been a leader in the adoption and use of cleaner-burning ethanol,” said Jim O’Connor, a farmer in Blooming Prairie, Minn., and Chairman of the MCR&PC. “We’re pleased to make an early commitment to this future public-private infrastructure partnership that will benefit, not only farmers and rural communities, but all Minnesotans.”
Higher blends of ethanol in transportation fuel reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 46%, deliver higher octane at a lower cost, and provide significant economic benefits across the state.
Governor Walz has recommended $2 million per year for a state biofuel infrastructure grant program. Both the Minnesota House and Senate Agriculture committees have included funding for biofuels infrastructure in their budget bills.
“Expanding access and use of higher ethanol blends is a top priority for MCGA,” said Tim Waibel, a farmer in Courtland, Minn., and President of MCGA. “MCGA is proud to be a part of the solution in helping to lower greenhouse gas emissions through the use of higher blends of ethanol, while providing drivers with a higher octane and lower priced fuel.”
MCR&PC and MCGA have a history of providing grants to retailers to replace or upgrade fuel infrastructure for higher blends of blends of ethanol. Since 2008, MCR&PC and MCGA have invested nearly $28 million in ethanol infrastructure, research and education.
“As we continue to see incredible growth in sales of higher blends of ethanol like E15, it’s clear that Minnesotans want an option at the pump that reduces greenhouse gas emissions and improves air quality,” said O’Connor. “Investing in infrastructure will make it easier than ever for drivers to find ethanol blends that will help us reach our environmental goals all while supporting rural communities and Minnesota’s farm families.”