The Adminstration intends to spur biofuel development by injecting Federal funds
The Obama administration said a key part of the spending was $30 million in federal funding being made available to quicken the development of biofuels to replace diesel and jet fuel consumed by the military, the commercial aviation and shipping sectors.
President Obama announced last August that the U.S. departments of Agriculture and Energy and the Navy will invest up to $510 million during the next three years to produce advanced drop-in aviation and marine biofuels to power military and commercial transportation. The $30 million was part of this commitment.
U.S. Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus said last year he wants half of the fuel used in Navy ships and aircraft to come from renewable sources by 2020.
Mabus told reporters every time the price of oil goes up $1 a barrel it costs the Navy an additional $30 million in fuel costs. This year alone he said the Navy has seen price spikes going into “the hundreds of millions of dollars.”
“Right now we give countries that produce oil too much of an input on whether our ships sail, our aircraft fly or our surface vehicles operate,” said Mabus. “We don’t want to have to be in the position of having to trade readiness for fuel. That’s simply a trade that is unacceptable and it’s a vulnerability that we have to address and this will help to address it.”