Researchers at UGA are harvesting algae grown in tanks and bags such as these to create a biofuel. (Andrew Davis Tucker / University of Georgia)
The National Defense Authorization Act of 2014 signed by President Obama Dec. 26 would hamper the ability of the Defense Department to purchase biofuels.
The legislation bars the Defense Department from purchasing any bulk purchases of “drop-in fuel” -- defined as a replacement for traditional fuel -- until the price per gallon is equal to or less than the price of conventional fuels. An earlier version of the legislation specifically defined the drop-in fuel as anything plant-based.
If the Defense Department decided to purchase the fuel it would need to issue a waiver detailing the cost of the fuel and submit it to Congress.
The Navy has come under fire for its purchases of bio-fuels at above market rates to help test its use for Navy ships and aircraft.