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Obama Administration Awards Full Funding forPennsylvania’s State Energy Program
Additional $49 million will help reduce energy use and carbon pollution, improve energy efficiency, and create green jobs
WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu today announced that Pennsylvania has received all of the State Energy Program funding allocated to the state under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The Department of Energy delivered an additional $49 million to the state, which has now received a total of $99 million through the State Energy Program to support energy efficiency and renewable energy projects across the state, while creating jobs and reducing carbon pollution.
“States are the engines of our economy and the laboratories of innovation,” said Secretary Chu. “This funding will allow states to put in place innovative energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that will create jobs in communities across the country while reducing carbon pollution and helping to shift how America uses energy.”
The Department of Energy had previously awarded the first 50 percent of Pennsylvania’s State Energy Program (SEP) funding. The remaining 50 percent announced today was delivered to the state after aggressive oversight, reporting, and accountability measures were put in place.
Pennsylvania will use its Recovery Act SEP funding to provide grants and other support for energy efficiency and conservation efforts with the goal of reducing dependence on fossil fuels and stimulating growth in renewable sectors.
Pennsylvania Green Energy Works! will offer grants to businesses, non-profit organizations, universities, local governments, and utilities to deploy shovel-ready efficient, environmentally sustainable and economically worthwhile energy projects across the state. Over a longer time horizon, Pennsylvania will continue to fund advanced energy projects, tailoring programs to specific economic sectors. For example, the Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority will continue to serve business needs, while the Pennsylvania Energy Harvest will support schools, nonprofits, and local governments across Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania will also establish a Green Development Loan Program, a revolving loan fund that will provide clean-energy and energy-efficiency financing for facilities projects, resource efficiency measures, and advanced and renewable clean-energy technologies. In addition to originating loans and leveraging private capital, this fund will make outright awards to cover the costs of project feasibility studies, energy audits, or project design, which can often present significant barriers to sustainable development investments.
The Recovery Act appropriated $3.1 billion to the State Energy Program to help promote energy efficiency and clean energy deployment, as well as to support local economic recovery. States use these grants at the state and local level to create green jobs and address state energy priorities. Activities eligible for State Energy Program funding include energy audits, building retrofits, education and training efforts, transportation programs to increase the use of alternative fuels and hybrid vehicles, and new financing mechanisms to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy investments.
Transparency and accountability are important priorities for SEP and all Recovery Act projects. Throughout the program's implementation, DOE will provide strong oversight at the local, state, and national level, while emphasizing with states the need to quickly award funds to help create new jobs and stimulate local economies.