WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), member of the Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee, announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will launch the Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative to provide assistance for biofuel producers who have been hurt by the pandemic, among other farmers, ranchers, and producers. 

In May 2020, Klobuchar and Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) introduced the Renewable Fuel Feedstock Reimbursement Act of 2020, which would require the USDA to reimburse biofuel producers for their feedstock purchases from the beginning of the pandemic.

The coronavirus relief package passed in December 2020 included specific language, based on the Renewable Fuel Feedstock Reimbursement Act, which explicitly clarified that USDA may provide direct payments to biofuel producers hard hit by the pandemic.

“The biofuel industry was hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic, leaving many producers in need of relief,” said Klobuchar. “I’m glad to see that the USDA is fully utilizing its resources to get biofuel producers back on their feet as we rebuild our economy.”

Klobuchar has been a leader in supporting biofuel producers throughout the pandemic. In February, Klobuchar led a bipartisan letter to the acting administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) urging the Agency to restore integrity to the Renewable Fuel Standard.

Earlier this month, Klobuchar and Grassley led a letter urging Tom Vilsack, Secretary of the USDA, to use the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) and other resources to aid the nation’s biofuel industry. 

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