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WASHINGTON - The U.S. Department of Energy announced today that 20 communities have been selected for more than $60 million in funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to implement local energy efficiency and renewable energy programs that will reduce energy use by American homes, vehicles, and businesses. Local governments, nonprofit organizations and quasi-governmental organizations are among the recipients for the competitive grants, administered under the Department of Energy's Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) program.
"These projects will stimulate the economy and create jobs on the main streets of local communities across the nation through innovative investments in energy conservation, efficiency and renewable power generation," said Under Secretary of Energy Kristina Johnson. "We already have proven technologies to reduce energy use at home and at work. These projects will provide access to those tools for more Americans, saving money for thousands of families and businesses."
These awards were open to local communities that were not eligible to receive the initial, population-based formula grants under the EECBG program. The projects announced today will continue to build on the Recovery Act's historic down-payment for a clean energy future, empowering local communities to address their clean energy priorities through projects such as residential, commercial and municipal energy efficiency retrofits, efficiency improvements to transportation systems, and installations of renewable energy systems to reduce fossil fuel consumption.
Award selections for the competitive EECBG program targeted innovative approaches that will help demonstrate the high rate of return on efficiency and renewable energy investments, achieve significant long-term benefits for the community, and act as a model for future public or private energy efficiency efforts.
Specifically, the funding supports projects that deliver energy efficiency retrofits in residential and commercial buildings and establish financing programs for energy efficiency improvements. Other activities will include transportation programs that conserve energy through trip reduction strategies and alternative transportation options, projects to increase recycling and reduce the energy demands of delivering and supplying clean water through water efficiency and conservation measures, the installation of energy efficient street lights, and the integrated deployment of renewable energy systems in conjunction with energy efficiency retrofits to existing buildings.
The award recipients were selected through a competitive review process that took into account the expected energy savings and reduced emissions impacts of the projects, leveraged investments from other non-federal sources, and whether the project could be replicated and expanded to contribute to a sustainable market for energy efficiency nationally. Projects that proposed innovative approaches and identified and addressed ways to overcome institutional, regulatory, or market barriers were also favored.
As part of the accountability requirements under the Recovery Act, all grant recipients are required to submit quarterly reports on the number of jobs created or saved under the project, the energy saved, the renewable energy capacity installed, the greenhouse gas emissions reduced, and the funds leveraged.
The following communities have been selected for awards under the competitive EECBG program:
- City of Tanana - Tanana, Alaska ($1,500,000)
- Central Basin Municipal Water District - Commerce, California ($2,000,000)
- County of Santa Barbara - Santa Barbara County, California ($2,401,309)
- Eagle County - Eagle County, Colorado ($4,916,126)
- Connecticut Innovations, Inc. - Rocky Hill, Connecticut ($4,171,124)
- St. Lucie County Board of County Commissioners - St. Lucie County, Florida ($2,941,500)
- Indiana Municipal Power Agency - Carmel, Indiana ($5,000,000)
- City of West Union - West Union, Iowa ($1,000,000)
- Riley County - Riley County, Kansas ($3,000,000)
- Town of University Park - University Park, Maryland ($1,425,000)
- City of Wyandotte - Wyandotte, Michigan ($3,807,000)
- Minnesota Municipal Power Agency - Minneapolis, Minnesota ($3,398,252)
- Mid-America Regional Council - Kansas City, Missouri ($4,063,994)
- New Mexico Recycling Coalition - Santa Fe, New Mexico ($2,795,261)
- The Bedford-Northern Westchester Energy Action Coalition (Bedford-NWEAC) - Town of Bedford, New York ($1,267,874)
- Columbia County - Columbia County, Oregon ($3,461,319)
- Fayette County - Fayette County, Pennsylvania ($4,100,018)
- Rutland West Neighborhood Housing Services, Inc. - West Rutland, Vermont ($4,487,588)
- Thurston Regional Planning Council - Olympia, Washington ($2,159,021)
- Conservation Services Group, Inc. - City of Bainbridge Island and City of Bremerton, Washington ($4,884,614)
More information can be found on the EECGB Program website.