Democratic members of Congress and some U.S. military leaders are planning to fight the Republican-led effort to quash efforts to expand use of biofuels for the U.S. military, the Colorado Independent reports.
Proponents of more biofuel use by the military say they can help hedge against the type of fuel-price increases that will cost the federal government $1.3 billion in 2012. Petroleum use also causes safety issues. About one in 30 convoys designed to ensure the operation of refueling lines in Iraq and Afghanistan has led to a soldier casualty. More petroleum use also causes more greenhouse gas emissions, and the resulting climate change causes natural disasters that boost disaster-relief requirements from the military, biofuel proponents say.
Last week, the Talking Points Memo blog reported that a Republican-led group within the House Armed Services Committee put at risk hundreds of millions of dollars worth programs approved during the past few years by voting to disallow the U.S. Department of Defense from paying more for biofuels that would be used in military vehicles than regular fuels. Such a ban would reverse projects such as last August's a three-year, $510 million project with the USDA and DoD that was designed to develop biofuels for the private sector.