The North Dakota House of Representatives passed two key pieces of a comprehensive renewable energy plan for the state of North Dakota. Senate bills 2180 and 2288 are targeted at increasing the production of renewable energy within the state of North Dakota.
"The renewable energy industry in North Dakota is expanding," House Majority Leader Rick Berg said. "The two bills passed today are just a part of our overall effort to enhance growth in the renewable energy industry and foster dynamic partnerships between the energy resources of the future and established industries."
$5 million fund to encourage investment in bio-fuels facilities, livestock operations that will use bio-fuels byproducts and bio-fuels pumps throughout the state. The fund will provide interest buydown of up to $500,000 for a Biodiesel or ethanol production facility, $250,000 for livestock operations, $20,000 for biofuels retailers who put in new equipment.
"The Biofuels PACE program will encourage partnerships between our renewable energy industry and livestock producers," said Rep. Mike Brandenburg. "It will support a minimum of $25 million, but potentially $750 million of new investment in biofuels."
SB 2280 creates the North Dakota Renewable Energy Council to oversee grants, loans or other financial assistance necessary to promote research and development of renewable energy in North Dakota. The bill appropriates $3 million in state dollars and gives the Renewable Energy Council the authority to seek an additional $17 million in funding from outside sources.
"This new council is like APUC for renewable energy," Rep. Duane DeKrey said. "This funding will close the financing gap, and allow these renewable projects to reach their commercial potential."
"Over the last few sessions we have worked with the Governor and the renewable energy industry to put incentives in place to expand both the use and production of renewable energy in North Dakota," Rep. Todd Porter said. "These new programs, combined with the incentives that we have already put in place, will help us support our goal of doubling our energy production by 2025 and supporting the national 25 X 25 renewable energy initiative."