Show Me the Money: DOE Releases $10.5 Million to Improve Solar Technologies and Energy Projects
On June 26, President Obama announced that he will appropriate $10.5 million for the further advancement of the Solar America Cities program. The Department of Energy (DOE) has had success recently in partnering with 25 cities across the nation to introduce and experiment with new solar technologies and to take on the unique challenges and opportunities for local governments in order to accelerate solar energy deployment. Through this Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA), DOE intends to provide outreach to many more local governments across the United States that have not been part of the Solar America Cities program, enabling those local governments to take informed action to expand their local solar market. While many local governments are interested in solar energy technologies, city and county staff are often in need of unbiased technical guidance in order to move forward with a comprehensive solar energy plan.
Through this FOA, DOE intends to select one or more partner organizations to provide a maximum number of local governments with actionable information that will enable them to accelerate solar energy deployment. The selected recipient(s) will proactively address the solar-related information needs of significant local markets, as well as provide a mechanism by which individual local governments can receive and share timely information on solar energy. The goal is to reach multiple levels of local government stakeholders through this activity, such as mayors, city council members, county officials, sustainability and environmental staff, and planners.
Potential activities to be conducted by the selected organization(s) include:
- Working to develop sets of solar-related information most relevant to local governments.
- Providing strategic information on solar energy to local governments and other local stakeholders through existing communications channels. By leveraging established communications channels, selected organizations can disseminate timely information on solar energy technologies to a large number of local governments.
- Creating effective forums for sharing the lessons learned and best practices developed by DOE's 25 Solar America Cities with other local governments. One potential forum envisioned is regional workshops designed to facilitate peer-to-peer information sharing among local governments, which local government stakeholders consistently report is the most effective way for them to learn about new policy options. Encouraging regional collaboration accelerates the market by driving local governments to develop advanced regional models such as regional permitting schemes, multijurisdictional financial incentive programs, and coordinated workforce development efforts.
- Creating a system that addresses local government needs for actionable information on solar energy technologies with a series of targeted presentations, including in-person site visits to specific local governments. Tailored, in-person information dissemination can address the specific needs of a local government while continuing to encourage a comprehensive approach to solar energy deployment.
Applicants may propose additional outreach mechanisms that they believe will help meet the goal of enabling local governments to accelerate solar energy deployment. Ideally, these activities should result in a two-way information flow that provides feedback on needs and challenges of local governments, and informs future activity development. Given the broad geographic reach of activities to be funded under this FOA, and the multiple target audiences, DOE encourages, but does not require, partnering among outreach organizations, as necessary, to best accomplish the goals of this activity.
The success of the project(s) funded under this announcement may be measured by the number of local governments educated, and by the increase in solar knowledge and installed solar capacity of local governments as a result of the funded outreach efforts.
All types of U.S. domestic entities are eligible to apply, except other federal agencies, Federally Funded Research and Development Center (FFRDC) Contractors, and nonprofit organizations described in section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 that engaged in lobbying activities after December 31, 1995.
Applications must be received by October 15, 2009, not later than 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time.
If you have questions about any of these funding opportunity announcements or other renewable energy issues, or if you would like to discuss the possibility of your project applying for these or other government funds, please contact:
David Benson at (206) 386-7584 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Janet F. Jacobs at (206) 386-7582 or email@example.com
J. Graham Noyes at (206) 386-7615 or firstname.lastname@example.org
John Laney at (206) 386-7559 or email@example.com
Marcus Wood at (503) 294-9434 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Bill Holmes at (503) 294-9207 or email@example.com
Greg Jenner at (612) 373-8857 or firstname.lastname@example.org
John McKinsey at (916) 319-4746 or email@example.com
Seth Hilton at (916) 319-4749 or firstname.lastname@example.org