The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy (FE) has been involved in a range of exciting projects and research efforts. Between April 13th to July 30th, we issued six new funding opportunity announcements (FOAs) totaling $183 million, made $151 million of project selections under five previous FOAs, celebrated our 2020 Gears of Government Award recipients, launched several new blogs and infographics that highlight program achievements, and more.

ICYMI, we hope you enjoy catching up on some of FE’s highlights from this quarter:

U.S. Department of Energy

News Highlights

DOE Invests $118 Million to Support the Coal FIRST Initiative

This month, DOE announced $118 million in federal funding to support the Coal FIRST (Flexible, Innovative, Resilient, Small, Transformative) Initiative. Under this cost-shared research and development, DOE is awarding a total of $37 million to seven projects and releasing a new FOA for $81 million. 

Coal FIRST energy plants will incorporate carbon capture, utilization, and storage technologies and will be able to generate carbon-neutral electricity or hydrogen. Hydrogen can enable the transition of the electricity, manufacturing, and transportation sectors toward a low-carbon footprint. These plants will be capable of flexible operations and provide affordable electricity and hydrogen, maintaining U.S. energy competitiveness.

“Deploying new coal-to-energy plants requires a different way of thinking, and our Coal FIRST program is doing just that,” said Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Steven Winberg. “Through this innovative R&D initiative, we’re transitioning from the large coal plants of the past to smaller, flexible, and more efficient power plants that will meet the needs of a changing electric grid.”

Read the announcement.

Additional FE News Updates


FE issued six new FOAs, totaling $183 million:

  • DE-FOA-0002185 – $14 million for Advanced Coal Processing Technologies.
  • DE-FOA-0002187 – $46 million for Engineering-Scale Testing from Coal- and Natural-Gas-Based Flue Gas and Initial Engineering Design for Industrial Sources.
  • DE-FOA-0002332 – $6 million for Energy Storage for Fossil Power Generation.
  • DE-FOA-0002193 – $6 million for University Training and Research for Fossil Energy Applications.
  • DE-FOA-0002300 – $30 million for Small-Scale Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Systems and Hybrid Energy Systems.
  • DE-FOA-0002180 – $81 million for Design Development and System Integration Design Studies for Coal FIRST Concepts.

FOA Selections

FE selected projects under five previous FOAs to receive $151 million in federal funding

  • DE-FOA-0001999 – $85 million for Carbon Storage Assurance Facility Enterprise (CarbonSAFE): Site Characterization and CO2Capture Assessment.
  • DE-FOA-0002192 – $10 million for Extreme Environment Materials for Power Generation.
  • DE-FOA-0002186 – $17 million for Novel Concepts of the Utilization of Carbon Dioxide from Industrial Sources.
  • DE-FOA-0002057 – $37 million for Critical Components for Coal FIRST Power Plants of the Future.
  • DE-FOA-0002190 – $2 million for Research for Innovative Emission Reduction Technologies Related to Coal Combustion Residuals.

Gears of Government Awards

This year, General Services Administration & the Office of Management and Budget selected four FE employees and one FE team as 2020 Gears of Government Award winners. These awards recognize individuals and teams across the Federal workforce whose dedication supports exceptional delivery of key outcomes for the American people.

Department of ENergy Amy Sweeney
Pictured: Amy Sweeney, one of FE’s 2020 Gears of Government Awardees

Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Steven Winberg explained, “The Gears of Government Award recipients embody the values of mission, service, and stewardship, and I am incredibly proud of those in FE who were recognized for this award. Their contributions help to ensure that our Nation’s fossil energy resources can be relied upon every day. That is vital to our mission. Congratulations to all of FE’s recipients.”

Meet FE’s 2020 Gears of Government Award recipients.

Fossil Energy Ensures U.S. Energy Security

Over the past several months, the global economy has experienced a period of unique transformation because of COVID-19. The fact that remains constant in this new economic landscape is that our society relies on energy. Check out some examples that highlight how our work in FE helps ensure the Nation’s energy security. Below is a sneak peek.

  • Open crude oil reserves to respond to crises
  • Use the Nation’s abundant coal reserves to produce valuable materials
  • Decrease carbon emissions for a cleaner energy future.

The Appalachian Energy and Petrochemical Renaissance

Last month, DOE released a report entitled The Appalachian Energy and Petrochemical Renaissance.

The Appalachian Energy and Petrochemical Renaissance
The Appalachian Energy and Petrochemical Renaissance

The report’s key finding is that Appalachia’s economic growth potential is extremely high—even in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic economic setback—because of its abundant energy resources.

As the Nation’s top producing region of natural gas and a major producer of coal and natural gas liquids, Appalachia is critical to advancing America’s future prosperity and energy security.

Read more about how Appalachia is poised to play a leading role in American energy dominance.

BRAND NEW Infographics

If you’re interested in learning about the Strategic Petroleum Reserve; the Mickey Leland Energy Fellowship Program; Carbon Capture, Utilization, and Storage; and Liquefied Natural Gas, check out our new infographics.

We hope you enjoyed this quarter’s edition of ICYMI. For more content like this, sign up for our FE Newsletter. Thank you for reading!