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Watch the video above to find out how the federal government and private sector partners are working together to strengthen U.S. clean energy manufacturing competitiveness. | Video courtesy of the Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative.
It’s an exciting time for clean energy manufacturing in America. Renewable energy technologies are becoming increasingly cost-competitive and demand is growing rapidly. Our domestic energy boom has lowered utility bills for families and businesses across the country. And advances in energy productivity have made U.S manufacturers more globally competitive than ever.
Two years ago, the Energy Department launched its ambitious Clean Energy Manufacturing Initiative (CEMI) in support of President Obama’s commitment to revitalize American manufacturing. CEMI is working to make U.S. companies that produce clean energy technologies more competitive in the global marketplace and boost America’s manufacturing sector as a whole by improving energy productivity and leveraging domestic energy sources. Initially established under the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, CEMI now supports every Energy Department office as part of a larger effort to strengthen manufacturing across all energy sectors.
To mark this anniversary, we’re looking back at some of successes and key milestones from the initiative’s first two years. Across the nation, CEMI is providing resources for manufacturers that advance America’s competitiveness and efficiency in a variety of ways. Here are just a few examples.
We’re investing in high-impact clean energy manufacturing technologies. From specific renewable energy infrastructure to wide-ranging, broadly applicable manufacturing technologies, the Energy Department is a leader in promoting cutting-edge research and development (R&D). Last week, the Department’s Wind and Water Power Technologies Office announced $1.8 million in funding to address the challenges of transporting larger wind turbine blades (longer than 60 meters), which can capture more power from wind resources. Another innovation success story involves the world's first 3D-printed car. Arizona-based Local Motors and Cincinnati Incorporated teamed with Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Manufacturing Demonstration Facility (MDF) with funding support from the Energy Department’s Advanced Manufacturing Office to print the car chassis using a new machine called Big Area Additive Manufacturing.
We’re building collaborative facilities where experts can work together to tackle big challenges. In addition to R&D projects, CEMI supports facilities where people from industry, academia and government can come together to improve the performance and lower the costs of clean energy technologies. The Advanced Manufacturing Office supports the MDF, the Critical Materials Institute led by Ames National Laboratory, N.C. State University’s PowerAmerica institute focusing on wide bandgap semiconductors and the Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation at the University of Tennessee. The Advanced Manufacturing Office also supports America Makes, the Department of Defense’s National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute.
We’re bringing the Energy Department’s clean energy manufacturing strategy to life. As part of an integrated approach, CEMI:
- Coordinates through Energy Department offices to analyze manufacturing-related challenges and opportunities;
- Finds ways industry, National Laboratories and innovators can work together to boost and improve production of clean energy technologies;
- Provides manufacturers technical assistance to identify techniques to save energy and money;
- Connects energy entrepreneurs with resources and tools that will help them move their innovations to the marketplace.
With two years behind us, CEMI is looking ahead. The booming market for clean energy technologies is an important opportunity to create jobs by making those products right here in America. Enhancing U.S. competitiveness in manufacturing clean energy technologies can boost the economy and strengthen energy security and energy innovation while also reducing environmental impacts and lowering energy costs.
Through continued support for innovation, inspiration and collaboration across this thriving industry, CEMI will remain at the forefront of America’s clean energy revolution. Visit energy.gov/eere/CEMI to learn more.