Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

April 13, 2007 16:31 ET

Canada's New Government Invests in Renewable Energy Production in Ontario

LONDON, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - April 13, 2007) - Joe Preston, Member of Parliament for Elgin-Middlesex-London, on behalf of the Honourable Chuck Strahl, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food and Minister for the Canadian Wheat Board, today announced that Canada's New Government is investing $300,000 in three Ontario organizations to help them participate in the emerging biofuels industry.

"Canada's New Government has recently launched a number of initiatives to support and stimulate alternative energy development in Canada," said Joe Preston. "These initiatives demonstrate the government's commitment to protecting the environment, and creating new opportunities for farmers and our agricultural sector."

Projects being funded by the Biofuels Opportunities for Producers Initiative (BOPI) in Ontario include:

- $225,000 to Ag Energy Co-operative to determine the most beneficial approaches to financing, business plans and investment proposals for biofuel production;

- $45,000 to the Ontario Canola Growers' Association to determine the economic benefits of canola-based diesel for farmers and the local agricultural community; and

- $30,000 to the Ontario Soybean Growers to explore the economics and financial feasibility of on-farm bio-diesel production.

"These projects will help lead Ontario in biofuel production research," said Bette Jean Crews, Chair of the Agricultural Adaptation Council. "It demonstrates Ontario's commitment to our environment and our agriculture sector."

BOPI is a $20 million commitment by Canada's New Government that is designed to provide farmers and rural communities with opportunities to participate in, and benefit from, increased Canadian biofuels production. The initiative helps agricultural producers develop sound business proposals, as well as undertake feasibility or other studies to support the creation and expansion of biofuel production capacity. It is delivered through the regional industry councils that administer Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada's ACAAF Program. In Ontario, the funding for these projects is administered by the Agricultural Adaptation Council.

In Budget 2007, Canada's New Government allocated $2 billion over seven years to support the production of renewable fuels. In addition, since coming to office, this government has announced $500 million to assist farmers and rural communities to seize new market opportunities in the bio-economy through biofuels and bio-products initiatives.

BACKGROUNDER

Support for Biofuels Projects in Ontario

The Government of Canada is committed to requiring 5 percent average renewable fuel content in transportation fuels by 2010 and intends to regulate a 2 percent requirement for renewable content in diesel fuel and heating oil by 2012. Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) wants to ensure that these targets are implemented in ways that result in the greatest possible benefit to the agriculture sector, including ownership of biofuels production facilities by agricultural producers.

The Biofuels Opportunities for Producers Initiative (BOPI), which is delivered through the regional industry councils that administer AAFC's Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food (ACAAF) Program, was developed to help meet this goal. Individual project funding is capped at $300,000 and at least 25 percent of the project cost must be provided by the industry, of which one third must come from producers.

Three innovative biofuels projects in Southern Ontario will receive BOPI funding totalling $300,000 through the Agricultural Adaptation Council including:

- $225,000 to Ag Energy Co-operative to determine the most beneficial approaches to financing, business plans and investment proposals for biofuel production;

- $45,000 to the Ontario Canola Growers' Association to determine the economic benefits of canola-based diesel for farmers and the local agricultural community; and

- $30,000 to the Ontario Soybean Growers to explore the economics and financial feasibility of on-farm bio-diesel production.

Opportunities for greater involvement in biofuels production facilities allow agricultural producers to become participants in the value chain and increase their share of the benefits from renewable fuels production beyond delivering feedstock.

For more information on BOPI and the ACAAF program, please visit www.agr.gc.ca/bopi.

For more information on the Agricultural Adaptation Council, please visit www.adaptcouncil.org.

Contact Information

  • Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, Ottawa, Ontario
    Media Relations
    613-759-7972
    1-866-345-7972
    or
    Agricultural Adaptation Council
    Angela Stiles
    Executive Director
    519-822-7554