WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management (FECM) today announced up to $2.7 million in federal funding available to help local communities across the country create a roadmap toward repurposing existing energy assets, with expanded eligibility for participants. This announcement builds on the Capacity Building for Repurposing Energy Assets initiative that was first launched in August 2023 to assist communities where a significant portion of their local economy has historically been supported by energy assets, such as coal, oil, and/or natural gas power facilities and accompanying equipment and infrastructure.  

The initiative will help communities build technical capacity and develop a workforce necessary to help revitalize energy systems, address environmental impacts, and tackle challenges associated with energy assets that have been retired, or are slated for retirement. This effort advances FECM’s mission of minimizing environmental and climate impacts of energy systems and industrial processes while working to achieve net-zero emissions across our economy. It also supports the broader DOE mission of ensuring efficient transformation of the energy system while prioritizing labor and community engagement.

The re-issuance of this initiative expands the eligibility for communities to partner with eligible entities that include: 

  1. Community Colleges, including Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Minority Serving Institutions, and other educational entities recognized by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights;
  2. Local economic development entities; 
  3. Community based organizations and non-governmental organizations; 
  4. Local elected officials from municipalities (e.g. mayors’ offices);
  5. Labor unions and labor-management organizations; 
  6. Organizations that represent workers in energy communities; and 
  7. Workforce development entities involved in administering the public workforce system.

“We are excited to reopen this initiative while offering greater accessibility and opportunities for our local communities,” said Brad Crabtree, Assistant Secretary of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management. “By expanding the eligibility for this funding, we are seeking to enhance coordination between these local institutions and communities, provide an improved template for workforce development, and highlight a renewed path forward for communities that are impacted by energy asset closures.”

The retirement of energy assets means that energy transmission and distribution infrastructure, electrical interconnection equipment, site and permitting licenses, and other related infrastructure may be available for alternative uses. At the same time, these communities must find opportunities to replace lost revenues and provide jobs for highly specialized workers. The Capacity Building for Repurposing Energy Assets with Expanded Eligibility initiative will provide these communities with access to planning and other resources they need to develop a clean energy roadmap—giving them the chance to be active participants in crafting their own economic future.

The Capacity Building for Repurposing Energy Assets with Expanded Eligibility is managed by ENERGYWERX in partnership with DOE, a collaboration made possible through an innovative Partnership Intermediary Agreement set up by DOE's Office of Technology Transitions. This agreement enables ENERGYWERX to broaden DOE’s engagement with innovative organizations and non-traditional partners, facilitating the rapid development, scaling, and deployment of clean energy solutions.

Visit the ENERGYWERX website to sign up and view a pre-recorded informational webinar. Subsequent updates and announcements for the Capacity Building for Repurposing Energy Assets with Expanded Eligibility initiative will be posted on the website. Questions about the initiative can be submitted to info@energywerx.org.  

FECM minimizes environmental and climate impacts of fossil fuels and industrial processes while working to achieve net-zero emissions across the U.S. economy. Priority areas of technology work include carbon capture, carbon conversion, carbon dioxide removal, carbon dioxide transport and storage, hydrogen production with carbon management, methane emissions reduction, and critical minerals production. To learn more, visit the FECM websitesign up for FECM news announcements, and visit the National Energy Technology Laboratory website.