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COLUMBUS, OH -- Through a partnership between the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) and the Ohio Corn Marketing Program (OCMP), Ohio was awarded a $3.4 million grant through the Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership (BIP) to add infrastructure needed to supply more renewable fuel options to Ohio's drivers.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) grant will fund costs related to the installation of over 100 fuel pumps to distribute higher ethanol blends.

"We are proud to be a part of this partnership, which will double the number of renewable fuel pumps in Ohio," said ODA Director David T. Daniels. "It's good for corn growers, it's good for the state's agriculture industry and it's good for the environment."

The required matching contributions to the USDA's investment will be provided by OCMP, Protec Fuel, Sheetz and Speedway LLC. The grant will be administrated by ODA.

"Ohio corn farmers, through OCMP, are proud to leverage their checkoff dollars with this federal grant to increase ethanol infrastructure and support a clean-burning, home-grown fuel," said Tadd Nicholson, executive director of the OCMP. "Each year over 3,400 farmers supply corn to our seven ethanol plants to produce 500 million gallons of ethanol right here in Ohio."

In 2014, our national ethanol production replaced the need for imported oil by more than 512 million barrels equivalent, which is more barrels than what the U.S. bought from Saudi Arabia.

A typical gas pump delivers fuel with 10 percent ethanol, which limits the amount of renewable energy most consumers can purchase at the pump. Through this program, the investment will increase the number of stations nationwide that offer higher blends.

Ohio is one of 21 states to receive a BIP grant.

"This program will help Ohio and the other 20 states give consumers choices at the pump." Nicholson said.

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