DOE Announces Over $20 Million to 32 States and Local Communities Addressing Place-Based Energy Needs

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DOE Announces Over  Million to 32 States and Local Communities Addressing Place-Based Energy Needs

WASHINGTON, D.C.—In support of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, today the U.S. Department of Energy announced $20.5 million in funding awarded to 32 states, territories, local governments, and Tribes through the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) Program. U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm made the announcement to mayors from across the country at the 92nd annual U.S. Conference of Mayors Winter Meeting in Washington, D.C.  

“This program continues to bring essential federal funding directly to local communities across the country, helping Americans access energy efficiency upgrades like electric vehicle chargers and e-bike rebates, weatherization, affordable solar panels, and more,” said Secretary Jennifer M. Granholm. “The President’s Investing in America agenda is supporting local governments and tribal nations plan for a clean energy future, deploying energy efficiency upgrades that save money and build more resilient communities.” 

The 15 cities, 9 counties, 5 states, 1 Tribe, 1 territory, and the District of Columbia receiving funding in today’s tranche of awards will use funds for activities that include electric bicycle incentive programs, free home solarization for low-income families, municipal fleet electrification, decarbonization waste management strategies, and municipal building energy audits.  

Specific projects include: 

  • Raleigh, NC will advance sustainable transportation through three activities: an electric bicycle incentive program, a mobile public solar-powered EV charging station, and 30 EV chargers for the municipal fleet. The electric bicycle incentive program will specifically focus on increasing access to zero-emissions transportation for low-to-moderate income residents. The mobile solar-powered EV charging station will serve as a demonstration project and help the city collect data to inform the siting and development of future public charging infrastructure. (Award amount: $450,390) 
  • Shelby County and City of Memphis, TN will team up to undertake several activities to weave sustainability into operations and programming at the Memphis Zoo and further the Memphis Area Climate Action Plan. Funds will support a site assessment and installation of rooftop solar on publicly owned zoo buildings, expand community outreach and clean energy education programs at the zoo, and develop a waste characterization study and regional solid waste master plan for the city and county. (Award amount: $670,110)   
  • Palmdale, CA will launch two initiatives to deploy electric vehicle and clean energy infrastructure in the community. The Your Ride is EPIC Program will distribute wall-mounted plug-in EV chargers to eligible households that apply. Chargers will be available until funds are expended. The city will also create a detailed roadmap to convert the municipal fleet to zero emissions by 2035 and to install a microgrid at the city’s maintenance yard. (Award amount: $197,390) 
  • Keweenaw Bay Indian Community (KBIC) in Michigan will hire a technical consultant to update its strategic energy plan which was last completed in 2008. The plan will establish benchmarks and goals for the community to reduce energy use and emissions. Tribal leadership and community representatives on the KBIC’s Committee for Alternative and Renewable Energy will collaborate with the consultant to create a plan that reflects the community’s clean energy goals. (Award amount: $11,270) 
  • Miami-Dade County, FL will partner with nonprofit Solar United Neighbors to solarize 44 low-to-moderate income family homes. Solar United Neighbors will provide education and support for homeowners to learn about the program and apply. Through the program, each household will receive a 5kW solar system at no cost. Participants will see immediate cost savings on monthly electric bills and save roughly $840,000 in total over the lifespan of their panels. This project will follow the EECBG Program Solarize Campaign Blueprint. (Award amount: $1,134,700) 
  • Minnesota will fund three programs for energy efficiency across local governments, businesses, and individual homes. First, the state will host a competitive grant process for small towns to create climate plans and conduct energy audits on municipal buildings. Second, it will create a competitive revolving loan fund for commercial property owners to cover energy audits required to access the Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) program loans for solar and other clean energy projects. Remaining funds will go towards interest rate buydown for low-to-moderate income households on the state housing authority’s “Fix Up” loans for energy efficiency upgrades. (Award amount: $2,248,830) 

This funding marks the third round of formula awards granted through the EECBG Program since October 2023. In total, there is more than $431 million available to 2,708 states, local governments, Tribes, territories, and the District of Columbia to implement programs and projects that improve energy efficiency, cut carbon emissions, and reduce overall energy use. The program also contributes to the Biden-Harris Administration’s Justice40 Initiative by supporting eligible governments to direct 40% of overall benefits from EECBG Program-funded programs and projects to disadvantaged communities that are often energy-burdened or left behind in the clean energy transition. 

Other Awards Announced Today Include: 

  • Aroostook County, ME ($77,330) 
  • Baltimore County, MD ($712,040) 
  • Davis County, UT ($248,800) 
  • District of Columbia ($1,696,300) 
  • DuPage County, IL ($449,660)
  • Grants Pass, OR ($76,430)
  • Greeley, CO ($158,860)
  • Lake County, OH ($81,130)
  • Lancaster County, NE ($76,020)
  • Laredo, TX ($271,290)
  • Lincoln, NE ($300,090)
  • Lynnwood, WA ($76,450)
  • Town of Marana, AZ ($113,010)
  • Medford, MA ($117,420)
  • Michigan ($2,795,370)
  • Midland, TX ($180,140)
  • Montana ($1,673,750)
  • Nebraska ($1,779,420)
  • Oregon ($1,941,990)
  • Somerville, MA ($131,920)
  • South Jordan, UT ($132,100)
  • St. Louis County, MO ($735,340)
  • St. Paul, MN ($317,800)
  • U.S. Virgin Islands ($1,562,180)
  • Yuma, AZ ($150,960) 

The deadline for all local governments and Tribes to submit applications is April 30, 2024. Local governments and Tribes may apply for traditional grants or vouchers for equipment rebates or technical assistance. In November 2023, DOE launched the Voucher Portal to submit voucher applications. This streamlined platform and application will reduce the administrative burden of applying for and managing EECBG Program awards.  

DOE offers ample technical assistance to reduce application barriers, support project implementation, and build capacity. Technical assistance opportunities include in-person and virtual trainings, EECBG Program Blueprints, which are high impact project ideas and step-by-step instructions to achieve them, as well as Blueprint Cohort sessions where grantees learn from clean energy experts and network with peer local governments and Tribes pursuing similar projects. Eligible entities pursuing traditional grants may also apply by March 5, 2024 to host a DOE-sponsored Community Energy Fellow in their community.   

Formula grant applications for eligible local governments and Tribes are open through April 30, 2024 and awards will be made on a rolling basis. Visit the DOE webpage to learn more about the EECBG Program, how to apply, and resources available to eligible grantees.   

Originally published at https://www.energy.gov/articles/doe-announces-over-20-million-32-states-and-local-communities-addressing-place-based

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