Tribes can apply for technology- and fuel-neutral funding to develop their energy resources how they see fit

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $15 million in new funding to deploy energy infrastructure on tribal lands. This funding through DOE’s Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs will support Indian Tribes, including Alaska Native Regional Corporations and Village Corporations, Intertribal Organizations, and Tribal Energy Development Organizations, interested in developing their vast energy resources.

“This Administration has made energy independence for all a top priority. This funding opportunity will continue to open doors for Tribal Communities, enabling them to pursue the development of their natural resources how they see fit,” said Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes. “DOE hopes to empower these Native American and Alaska Native communities by offering choices for their energy supply – providing more reliable electricity and energy security.”

DOE’s Office of Indian Energy is soliciting applications from Indian Tribes, which include Alaska Native Regional Corporations and Village Corporations, Intertribal Organizations, and Tribal Energy Development Organizations, to:

  1. Install energy generating systems and/or energy efficiency measures for Tribal Buildings (Topic Area 1)
  2. Deploy community-scale energy generating systems or energy storage on Tribal Lands (Topic Area 2)
  3. Install energy systems for autonomous operation (independent of the traditional centralized electric power grid) to power a single or multiple essential tribal facilities during emergency situations or for tribal community resilience (Topic Area 3)
  4. Deploy energy infrastructure and integrated energy systems to electrify Tribal Buildings (Topic Area 4).

“We recognize that tribal communities can become energy and economic powerhouses, should they so choose,” said Office of Indian Energy Director Kevin R. Frost. “This fuel- and technology-neutral funding opportunity is consistent with the principles of tribal sovereignty and self-determination, and reflects the Office’s continued efforts to maximize the broadest possible deployment of energy solutions for the benefit of American Indians and Alaska Natives.”

The intended results of the 50% cost-shared projects selected under this FOA are to reduce or stabilize energy costs and increase energy security and resilience for Indian tribes and Alaska Native villages. This will further the Office of Indian Energy’s recent contributions toward DOE strategic goals: namely, promoting American energy independence by increasing domestic and international accessibility to American energy resources.

This funding opportunity builds on efforts by DOE’s Office of Indian Energy and its granted authorities under the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct 2005) to accelerate the deployment of energy infrastructure on tribal lands. Since 2017, the DOE Office of Indian Energy has invested over $32 million in nearly 60 tribal energy projects valued at $78 million.

The full FOA is available online. Applications are due February 6, 2020. 

Applications may also be submitted on behalf of an Indian Tribe(s) by an authorized Tribal Organization, provided evidence of that authority is included as part of the application. See the FOA for all eligibility requirements.

An informational webinar will be held December 10, 2019, at 3 p.m. Eastern Time, to provide more information on the FOA, including who is eligible to apply, what an application needs to include, cost share and other requirements, how to ask questions, and how applications will be selected for funding. Register for the webinar.



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