DOE offers $8B in funding for advanced fossil energy projects

Source:U.S. Department of Energy

The U.S. Department of Energy releases $8 billion solicitation for advanced fossil energy projects that avoid, reduce, or sequester greenhouse gases. (Pictured: The National Energy Technology Laboratory's chemical looping reactor. This promising approach to capturing carbon dioxide will be among the technologies explored as part of the Loan Program Office's advanced fossil energy solicitation. | Photo courtesy of the National Energy Technology Laboratory.)

The U.S. Department of Energy has published a solicitation making up to $8 billion in loan guarantee authority available to support innovative advanced fossil energy projects that avoid, reduce, or sequester greenhouse gases.  Authorized by Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, loan guarantees under this new solicitation will help provide critical financing to support new or significantly improved advanced fossil energy projects – such as advanced resource development, carbon capture, low-carbon power systems, and efficiency improvements – that reduce emissions of carbon dioxide, methane, and other greenhouse gas pollution.

“Under the Obama Administration, the Energy Department is taking an all-of-the-above approach to American energy to ensure we develop all our abundant energy resources responsibly and sustainably,” said Secretary Moniz. “Currently providing 80 percent of our energy, coal and other fossil fuels will continue to be a critical part of our energy portfolio as we move toward a low-carbon future. By helping to accelerate the introduction of innovative, clean fossil energy technologies ready for deployment at commercial-scale today, investments under this solicitation will help ensure we continue to have access to affordable, clean energy from all our domestic energy resources tomorrow.”

The Department published a draft solicitation on July 9, 2013, which opened a 60-day comment period.  During this time, the Department listened to potential applicants and other stakeholders and then incorporated their feedback into the solicitation.  As a result, the solicitation includes new provisions intended to facilitate applications, ensure quick review, and foster successful public-private partnerships. 

Currently, the Department of Energy’s Loan Programs Office (LPO) supports a large, diverse portfolio of more than $30 billion supporting more than 30 closed and committed projects.  Projects in the Department’s Loan Programs Office portfolio include one of the world’s largest wind farms; several of the world’s largest solar generation and thermal energy storage systems; the first new commercial nuclear power plant to be licensed and built in the U.S. in three decades; an electric vehicle manufacturing company that repaid its loan ahead of schedule and is now developing an export market; and more than a dozen new or retooled auto manufacturing plants across the country. 

With the publication of the Advanced Fossil Energy Projects solicitation, the Department is accepting applications through the Loan Programs Office web portal at apply.loanprograms.energy.gov, and expects to receive the initial applications by the end of February 2014. 

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