ANKENY, Iowa — Casey's General Stores Inc. received a $5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) as part of the agency's Rural Development Higher Blends Infrastructure Incentive Program (HBIIP).
The program provides funds to create infrastructure to expand the sales and use of renewable fuels. The $19 million in awarded grants to companies throughout the United States was designated through the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in 2022.
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Casey's plans to use the investment to install 456 E15 dispensers at 111 fueling stations located in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Nebraska and South Dakota, and projects the new dispensers will increase the amount of ethanol it sells by more than 49 million gallons per year.
According to the USDA, blending ethanol into gasoline has recently helped reduce fuel costs by approximately 25%, contributing to falling gas prices across the country and average prices now hovering under $2.99 in more than half of the U.S. HBIIP can potentially increase the number of Americans that benefit from falling prices by expanding the use of ethanol-based fuels at gas stations around the nation.
"President Biden's Inflation Reduction Act is giving people in rural areas the historic opportunity to expand clean energy and build an economy that benefits working families," Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said. "By increasing the supply of biofuels made here in the U.S., we are strengthening our energy independence, lowering costs for American families, creating new streams of income for agricultural producers and bringing good-paying jobs to people in rural communities."
The full list of states that will receive grant funding include: Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas and Wisconsin.
Other convenience stores to receive funds in this round of grants included Love's Travel Stops, which was also awarded a $5 million investment.
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Since the start of the Biden-Harris Administration, USDA has invested more than $96 million nationwide to increase access to biofuels at fueling stations. Approximately $11.6 million of this has been invested in Iowa.
Ankeny-based Casey's General Stores operates more than 2,600 stores across 17 states.