As expected, Congress made sure the Farm Bill (actually called the Food, Conservation and Energy Act of 2008) became law yesterday despite some sort of clerical error that resulted in a number of pages being dropped from the final version. Democrats were embarrassed. The Senate voted 82 to 13 to override President Bush's veto. The Farm Bill contains a lot of biofuel-friendly sections, as we detailed the other day. To mention a few of the provisions: Cellulosic ethanol producers have their eye on $348m in new tax credits for the second-generation biofuel. The bill also includes grants worth $320m to build biorefineries to make advanced biofuels and $70m for farmers to grow switchgrass for energy.
So, who's happy about the new law? A good number of people, including Howard Learner, executive director of the Environmental Law and Policy Center, who said the energy "programs are good for all Americans -- they are a win-win-win for our energy security, environment, and economy." Farm Press talked to a handful of economists and found the bill to be a "mixed bag."
[Source: WaPo, Environmental Law and Policy Center, Farm Press, AP]