By soliciting public input, the DOE wanted to ensure that the switch to sustainable energy is equitable and advantageous for all tribal nations. All “Indian Tribes,” which include Alaska Native Regional Corporations and Village Corporations, Tribal Energy Development Organizations, and Intertribal Organizations, will benefit from these inputs to create a more sustainable and clean energy future. Additionally, it will have an extensive favorable effect, such as lowering the nation’s carbon footprint, enhancing public health, and giving tribal communities new employment opportunities.
New Funding Opportunities to Promote the Extensive Use of Equitable Clean Energy
1. Funding for installing clean energy and electrifying tribal buildings and lands.
- Indian tribes are allocated $20 million to build clean energy infrastructure on their tribal lands.
- Equip tribal buildings with energy-saving devices and clean energy production systems. (Potential Interest 1)
- Establish community-scale renewable energy production or energy storage facilities on tribal lands. (Potential Interest 2)
- Establish an integrated energy system (or systems) that can run independently (as opposed to the traditional centralized electric power grid) to power one or more important tribal facilities in emergencies or to improve the resilience of the tribal communities. (Potential Interest 3).
- $15 million will be allocated to equip tribal buildings without electricity with integrated energy systems or other infrastructure. (Potential Interest 4).
2. Solar Fellowship for Communities with Low-Income
3. Accessible and Equitable electrification solutions
The EAS-E Prize is divided into two stages.
During Phase 1, teams must submit a concept paper detailing how their strategy will deal with accessible electricity. During Phase 2, teams must evaluate the market and commercial viability of the suggested solution and exhibit functional prototypes.
4. Expanding Community Solar Investments
5. Equitable Building Upgrades
6. Award for Empowering Rural Communities (Pre-Registration phase)
To entice individuals and organizations to help rural or remote places upgrade their energy systems, the Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) announced the $15 million Energizing Rural Communities Prize. This grant is a part of the $1 billion ERA (Energy Improvements in Remote or Rural Areas) Program.
There are also two project tracks for this prize.
The $10 million Partner track will encourage initiatives to connect remote or rural communities to government funding, technical assistance, or a network of partners that may help put clean energy demonstration projects into action.
New Funding Opportunities for School
- Energy Champions Leading the Advancement of Sustainable School (CLASS) The $4.5 million Energy CLASS Prize supports regional educational institutions by hiring and preparing energy managers to identify, plan, and implement school efficiency and health improvements. Awards are provided to assist in building employee capacity and institutional expertise.
- Revive American schools! Upgrades to Energy Efficiency in Public K–12 Facilities A total of $80 million from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Act will be used to improve energy efficiency, especially in underprivileged school districts. Prizes range from $500,000 to $15,000,000 for each winner. Focus areas include high-impact energy efficiency, cutting-edge energy technology packages, and health improvements.
Boost Your Voices!
In addition to receiving additional funding from DOE, communities have numerous opportunities to voice their ideas and influence the creation of future projects by responding to the Requests for Information (RFIs) listed below:
Support the communities where the transmission lines are located.
The Grid Deployment Office is looking for input from the public to help DOE execute a new $760 million Inflation Reduction Act provision, Grants to Facilitate the Siting of Electricity Transmission Lines.
According to this RFI, the program design and economic development strategies for impacted areas should consider equity, energy, and environmental justice concerns.
Procedures for Home Energy Rebate Programs.
The Office of State and Community Energy Programs is seeking public input on benchmarks for $8.8 billion in new House Energy Rebate programs funded by the Inflation Reduction Act to promote an equitable market for home energy efficiency improvements.
Creating Ecosystems for Place-Based Innovation.
The Offices of Science and Technology Transitions seek feedback on projects for place-based innovation that best use the Department’s National Laboratories and Sites to create local innovation ecosystems.