The US DOE has issued a Request for Information (not yet a solicitation for proposals) on the nationally competitive round of ARRA funding through the Energy Efficiency Community Block Grant program. Preliminary guidance indicates that DOE intends to make $333M available through two separate paths.
Per the RFI, the funds have been split into two pots with different eligibility requirements called Topic 1 and Topic 2 as follows:
• Topic 1: DOE anticipates that a total of up to $390.04 million will be available through competitive grants to the direct recipients under the formula EECBG program – States, U.S. Territories, counties (200,000 population or more), cities ($35,000 population or more), and tribes. DOE plans to make from only four to eight awards nationwide that are between $50 million and $150 million each. These funds are being targeted for a small number of high-profile, high-impact awards that will enable large-scale program of ongoing energy efficiency retrofits on residential, commercial, and public buildings in geographically focused areas. These programs should result in high-quality retrofits that lead to significant efficiency improvements to a large fraction of buildings within targeted neighborhoods or communities (i.e., “whole-neighborhood” retrofits). Although no recipient cost share will be required, DOE plans to make awards that are highly leveraged (i.e., at least 5:1 per federal dollar invested).
• Topic 2: Up to $63.68 million will be available nationwide for cities less than 35,000 in population, counties less than 200,000 in population, and state-recognized tribes that are not federally-recognized. These funds are to be used to increase energy efficiency and reduce the environmental footprint in the commercial, residential, transportation, manufacturing, or industrial sectors. Projects are anticipated to be between $1 million and $5 million. DOE anticipates funding between 15 and 60 awards nationwide under this topic.
Please read the RFI at US Department of Energy for more information about what DOE is currently planning.