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The EERE Blog includes updates to current Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) projects, interviews with energy experts, and success stories about EERE’s technology offices and national laboratories. Subscribe to the blog email list.

September 21, 2015
Students participating in the NEED Project at Scituate High and Calcutt Middle Schools planted 14 trees in Central Falls, Rhode Island.
Energy Department Helps Rhode Island Schools Teach Energy Essentials

As the school year begins anew across the nation, Rhode Island is at the frontier of energy education, offering a state-of-the-art curriculum in many of its schools. With the help of funds from the Energy Department’s State Energy Program, the Rhode Island Office of Energy Resources continues its partnership with the nonprofit National Energy Education Development Project (NEED) to provide energy education materials to schools and organize workshops to train teachers on energy curricula.

September 21, 2015
Vice President Biden Announces New SunShot Projects and Funding Opportunities at Solar Power International Conference

At the Solar Power International conference on September 16, Vice President Joe Biden made one of the largest solar research and development funding announcements to ever come out of our SunShot Initiative. His announcement included more than $102 million in new solar projects and funding now available to private industry, nonprofits, universities, and national laboratories to support American leadership in clean energy innovation.

September 16, 2015
Through the Energy Department's Climate Action Champions initiative, cities like Boston and Minneapolis have identified ways to reduce their carbon footprint by as much as 80 percent by 2050.
Running the Race for Clean Energy

Cities like Boston and Minneapolis have identified ways to reduce their carbon footprint by as much as 80 percent by 2050.

September 15, 2015
Xergy Inc. and an industrial partner are collaborating on a hybrid water heater that incorporates an Xergy-developed electrochemical compressor. Image: Xergy, Inc.
EERE Success Story—Xergy Develops Breakthrough Water Heater Compressor

New HVAC, water heating, and appliance technologies that work without conventional refrigerants are critical for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to reach its long-term goal of cutting building energy use in half and reducing environmental impacts. For the past 100 years, heat pumps, air conditioners, and refrigerators have relied on vapor compression to operate. However, conventional refrigerants used in vapor-compression equipment contribute to global climate change when released into the atmosphere.

September 15, 2015
Explore this infographic to see how the Energy Department is revving up the electric vehicle market through the EV Everywhere Grand Challenge. | Infographic by <a href="/node/379579">Sarah Gerrity</a>, Energy Department.
Celebrate EV Everywhere by Sharing Your Electric Vehicle Story

Share your electric vehicle story, photos and videos using #ILoveEVs and join us for a Facebook chat on Friday September 18 at 2 p.m. ET.

September 14, 2015
Video: Clean Energy Manufacturing Boosting U.S. Competitiveness

Learn how clean energy manufacturing is changing the kinds of products we make and how they are built.

September 11, 2015
NREL Senior Engineering Project Manager, Pat Moriarty, left and NREL Senior Engineer , Paul Fleming, review velocity (blue) and turbulence (yellow) in a simulation of the Lillgrund Wind Farm in Denmark, in the Visualization Lab in the ESIF at the National Renewable Energy Lab. The researchers have written Open Source software that simulates wind farm conditions.
Energy Systems Integration Facility Delivering on Promise to Strengthen America’s Clean Energy Innovation

Energy Department Secretary Ernest Moniz officially opened the Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF) two years ago at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado with a goal to accelerate research required to transform the U.S. energy system to one that is cleaner, more secure and more reliable. The facility is delivering on its promise to help integrate more renewable energy to the electric grid, and helping industry, academia and the federal government work closely together to research, test and evaluate individual technologies before going to market.

September 10, 2015
The Current State of Energy Technology

The Department of Energy releases the second Quadrennial Technology Review (QTR), exploring the current state of technologies and R&D in key energy sectors.

September 10, 2015
As part of the Better Buildings Challenge, Camas School District in Washington not only surpassed its energy efficiency goals, but did so five years early. | Photo courtesy of Camas School District.
EERE Success Story—Making the Grade: Washington School District Invest in Energy Efficiency

A Washington State school district achieved 28% savings on its energy bills as part of its commitment to the Energy Department’s Better Buildings Challenge. Camas School District committed one million square feet of buildings in an effort to reduce energy usage 20% by 2020.  Now, the district has exceeded its goal five years early. 

September 9, 2015
Low-E windows – featuring an energy-saving technology developed at Berkeley National Laboratory– are now found in 80% of homes and 50% of buildings in the United States.
EERE Success Story—Energy-Efficient Smart Windows are Lowering Energy Costs

Window innovations developed in collaboration with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are cutting energy cost for American families, businesses, institutions, and governments every year. With funding from the Energy Department, Berkeley Lab has developed technologies that help prevent energy from escaping out of windows.

September 8, 2015
3 Ways Solar Energy Programs Are Helping Achieve President Obama’s Climate Goals

Learn how our SunShot Initiative supports the president's climate change priorities by advancing solar energy.

September 3, 2015
Teams gather to hear the final results at the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2013. Many former Solar Decathlon participants have gone on to pursue careers in clean energy and sustainable housing. Photo by Stefano Paltera, U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon
Solar Decathlon 2015: The Next Generation of Clean Energy Leaders

Meet some of the inspiring Solar Decathlon alumni who have gone on to pursue careers in clean energy and sustainable housing.

September 2, 2015
EERE Blog
Cyclotron Road: Creating a Home for Top Clean Energy Technology Entrepreneurs within our National Laboratories

The best young scientists and researchers in the U.S. have a new pathway to advance innovative research and development projects that could accelerate America’s clean energy future. It’s a new tech-to-market program called Cyclotron Road where top entrepreneurial researchers can develop cutting-edge clean energy technologies at the Energy Department’s Berkeley Lab.

September 2, 2015
As part of the Better Buildings Challenge, Camas School District in Washington not only surpassed its energy efficiency goals, but did so five years early. | Photo courtesy of Camas School District.
Washington School District Makes the Grade in Energy Efficiency

Camas School District in Washington becomes the first school district to reach Better Buildings Challenge goals.

September 1, 2015
AEMC Summit to Showcase U.S. Department of Energy Manufacturing Innovation Successes and New Opportunities for Public-Private Partnerships

The third annual American Energy & Manufacturing Competitiveness (AEMC) Summit September 15-16 in Washington, DC is shaping up to be our best yet. The summit will feature keynotes and panel discussions with Energy Department leaders, national lab representatives, and top U.S. manufacturing CEOs. Successful public-private partnership models discovered through the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative's (CEMI) work will be showcased. CEMI is focused on growing American manufacturing of clean energy products and boosting U.S. competitiveness through major improvements in manufacturing energy productivity.

August 31, 2015
EERE Blog
Current Obsession: AC/DC

Though humans have been harnessing water to perform work for thousands of years, the evolution of modern hydropower began in the late 1800’s–coincidentally at the same time that Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla were embroiled in a battle now known as the War of the Currents.

August 27, 2015
The ConnectDER device, seen above, sits in between the meter and the meter socket.
EERE Success Story—Connection Without the Costs

Consumers who are planning to go solar can now save hundreds – or even thousands – of dollars in the process, thanks to a new invention that was funded by the SunShot Initiative’s Incubator program. It’s called the ConnectDER, and in addition to its consumer benefits, it soon might appeal to utilities, too.

August 26, 2015
Renewable Jet Fuel Is Taking Flight

It’s been one year since we at the Energy Department ramped up our efforts to develop renewable jet fuel for the military and commercial aviation industry. The Department’s Bioenergy Technologies Office (BETO) joined Farm to Fly 2.0—a partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the Transportation Department’s Federal Aviation Administration, and commercial airlines partners to develop a commercially viable aviation biofuel industry.

August 25, 2015
A worker drives a material handling train powered by hydrogen fuel cells at the BMW plant in Greer, South Carolina. The plant is home to the world's largest fleet of fuel cell forklifts. | Photo courtesy of BMW Manufacturing.
EERE Success Story—One Man's Trash, Another Man's Fuel: BMW Plant Converts Landfill Gas to Hydrogen Fuel

Supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE), the BMW manufacturing plant in Greer, South Carolina demonstrated the use of unique source to power some of its operations: bio-methane gas from garbage at a nearby landfill.  This BMW factory is also home to the largest fuel cell powered forklift fleet in the world, with more than 300 units. 

August 25, 2015
EERE Blog
Geothermal Data Repository Reaches 500 Submissions

The Energy Department's Geothermal Data Repository hit a milestone this past July when it received its 500th submission. This database helps accelerate research and development of geothermal energy resources by providing easy access to the work of hundreds of teams of researchers, engineers and scientists.

August 25, 2015
The plant BMW plant in Greer, South Carolina is home to the world's largest fleet of fuel cell forklifts. | Photo courtesy of BMW Manufacturing.
Garbage In, Power Out: South Carolina BMW Plant Demonstrates Landfill Gas to Hydrogen Fuel

The largest fuel cell forklift fleet in the world is now being powered with hydrogen produced on-site from biomethane gas at a nearby landfill.

August 25, 2015
The US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2015 is recruiting volunteers! The award-winning educational event, October 8-18 in Irvine, California, will showcase solar efficiency houses designed and built by collegiate teams worldwide. Source: Alexis Powers
Solar Decathlon 2015: Build it and They Will Come

The US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2015 is recruiting volunteers! The award-winning educational event, October 8-18 in Irvine, California, will showcase solar efficiency houses designed and built by collegiate teams worldwide.

August 25, 2015
When waiting to pick your kids up from school, turn off your car instead of idling in the parking lot. | <em>Photo from Kristy Keel-Blackmon/NREL</em>
Back to School: Saving Fuel in the Last Days of Summer

With school starting in many areas of the country, summer is coming to an end—but that doesn’t always mean that the hot weather is gone. When picking up or dropping off your kids at school, practice, or any number of after-school activities, keeping them comfortable is crucial to a complaint-free ride. To keep your passengers comfortable without spending extra at the pump, here are some ways to make sure you’re saving money and fuel.

August 21, 2015
This gigantic animated globe will soon take environmental awareness to a whole new level! The National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA’s) Science On a Sphere, like this one at their headquarters in Maryland, will soon feature new energy datasets to project on these animated globes worldwide. |Photo courtesy of Erin Twamley, Energy Department.
Energy on a Sphere

The Energy Department is tapping into Science On a Sphere -- a new tool developed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration -- to display renewable energy visualizations at museums and science technology centers worldwide.

August 20, 2015
Art created by a student at John Briggs Elementary School as part of their recent Green Ceremony.  John Briggs Elementary is one of the Massachusetts schools switching their heating fuel source from petroleum based fuels to wood pellets.
Massachusetts Schools Switch to Wood Pellets

As students head back to school in Massachusetts, they will have an opportunity to learn firsthand about clean energy in the classroom. Several schools in the Southern Berkshire Regional District and across the state are switching to wood pellets for their primary heat source with the Energy Department providing support through our State Energy Program.