Making headlines in your news roundup this week, leaders from both India and the U.S. are voicing strong support for bioenergy—in particular, ethanol.

USDA Sec. Perdue pledges support for trade and biofuels

Sonny Perdue won over Iowa farmers with an enthusiastic speech pledging strong support for trade and renewable fuels during his first visit to Iowa since becoming U.S. secretary of agriculture.

“I’m impressed,” said Iowa Farm Bureau President Craig Hill, a Warren County crop and livestock farmer. “We’re so appreciative to have a secretary of agriculture with his experience and his philosophy. It really improves the outlook for all of agriculture to have somebody like him advocating for us.”

Perdue, just over a week into his new job, said the Trump administration will fight to eliminate unfair trade barriers and open new markets for U.S. agricultural commodities. He also reaffirmed the Trump administration’s strong support for renewable fuels, saying “we’re not going to mess with the RFS (Renewable Fuel Standard).”

“Ethanol is here to stay,” he said. “We’re going to look for new technologies to be even more efficient. You have nothing to worry about.”

Read more about Perdue’s visit at the Iowa Farm Bureau.

Indian PM wants more advanced biofuels, faster

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi told those participating in a review of renewable energy programs and policies that he wants implementation of second generation advanced biofuel production ramped up.

He said this would help to more quickly achieve the country’s goals for 22.5% ethanol blending, but added that ethanol manufacturing also needs to be ramped up to meet rising demand.

In related news, last week, Praj Industries commissioned its first advanced biofuels plant in Gujarat, India, while Indian Oil announced it is moving forward with its plans for its first project co-located near its Panapat oil refinery. More than a half dozen other plants have been announced by oil marketing companies.

Read more about the Praj Industries project at the Business Standard.

Geoff Hayward

Communications Writer at Novozymes
Geoff writes about Bioenergy for the Communications team at Novozymes. When he isn’t advocating for an industry that’s changing the world for the better, he can be found on a North Carolina bike path or playing slide guitar.