TWO ORGANIZATIONS will receive $960,000 in grants to conduct a biodiesel fuel education program targeting vehicle bfleet operators and the general public.

According to Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman, “The grants are an important to expanding the economic prospects and environmental promise of renewable energy.”

The National Biodiesel Board was awarded $770,000 to create educational programming and the University of Idaho was awarded $190,000 to provide technical support for the effort. The purpose of the grants, which were awarded on a competitive basis, is to develop an educational program to target governmental and private entities that operate vehicle fleets.

The program will address issues the need to balance the positive environmental, social and human health effects of biodiesel consumption with the increased cost per gallon. In addition, these grants will be used to inform other interested groups and the general public about biodiesel fuel use.

Section 2004 of the 2002 farm bill authorizes a total of $4.8 million for fiscal years 2003 through 2007.

Biodiesel, which can be made from almost any agricultural oil or fat, including soybean oil, animal fats, and recycled greases, has many environmental and health benefits.