Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack reminded farmers, ranchers and forest landowners that the deadline for submitting project area proposals for the Biomass Crop Assistance Program (BCAP) is May 27, 2011.

“We know that viable solutions to combat high gas prices can be found in rural America,” said Vilsack. “America’s farmers, ranchers, rural businesses and communities are already important partners in helping to build a more secure, sustainable energy supply. The Biomass Crop Assistance Program provides incentives to producers of the materials needed to fuel the new clean energy economy and provide rural jobs.”

BCAP, which was authorized in the 2008 Farm Bill, provides incentives to eligible farmers, ranchers and forest landowners for the establishment and production of biomass crops for heat, power, bio-based products and biofuels. BCAP project areas are specific geographical areas where producers may enroll land to grow eligible biomass crops. Enrolled program participants may be eligible to receive financial and technical assistance as well as annual payments to establish these crops.

Project areas are established based on proposals submitted to FSA by a group of producers or an entity that converts biomass to heat, power, a bio-based product or advanced biofuel. Those interested in submitting a proposal are encouraged to contact their FSA state office for details.

For more information on BCAP, visit the USDA Farm Service Agency’s website at www.fsa.usda.gov/bcap.