USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) State Executive Director Val Dolcini reminds producers and interested partners in California that the application deadline for the next round of Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) Project Areas is approaching soon. Proposals will be accepted until April 23, 2012.

“Domestic biofuel production is a critical element of our national energy strategy to address high fuel prices and reduce reliance on foreign oil,” said Dolcini. “In California, the BCAP incentives provide farmers the opportunity to grow non-food crops to be processed into biofuels. And because many biofuel crops can grow where other crops cannot, it provides farmers with new opportunities to utilize marginal soils.”

The BCAP Project Areas where these crops are grown will be selected from proposals producers or biomass facilities submit to FSA. On Nov. 18, 2011, Congress enacted the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2012, limiting the total amount of funding available for BCAP to $17 million.

BCAP was created in the 2008 Farm Bill and nine project areas were selected in FY 2011. The total investment in biomass crop contracts in those project areas is estimated to be $55 million.

Information about submitting a proposal can be found on the www.grants.gov website. The BCAP Request for Proposal and additional information can be found at www.fsa.usda.gov/bcap.

For information about grants available through the federal government, visit www.grants.gov  and click on the APPLICANTS heading on the left side of the page. Then select APPLY FOR GRANTS, then select DOWNLOAD A GRANT APPLICATION PACKAGE, and enter “10.087” in the box with the heading CFDA NUMBER and click on DOWNLOAD PACKAGE.

For information about other FSA programs, visit www.fsa.usda.gov.