WASHINGTON, D.C. — As part of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced up to $80 million in grant funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for small- and medium-sized manufacturing firms (SMMs) to accelerate the adoption of recommendations made by DOE to improve energy efficiency to lower costs and reduce industrial emissions. The grants reinforce the President’s Investing in America agenda and support the Administration’s efforts to build a clean energy economy, revitalize American manufacturing, and create good-paying jobs in the United States.
“Small- and medium-sized manufacturers will play a major role in increasing domestic production of technologies and materials that will position the U.S. to lead the global clean energy transition,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is enabling facilities across the country to increase energy efficiency, cut costs, and contribute to a clean energy economy that works for all.”
DOE’s Industrial Assessment Center (IAC) and Combined Heat and Power Technical Assistance Partnership (CHP TAP) programs are deeply community-centered, leveraging the expertise of and providing training to community colleges, trade schools, and union training programs across the country. These centers provide in-depth assessments at small- and medium sized manufacturers (SMMs), which comprise more than 90% of the nation’s manufacturing base, to identify cost-effective opportunities to improve manufacturers’ energy efficiency, increase competitiveness, and reduce emissions. Today’s announcement will bolster the U.S. manufacturing base by making grants available to support projects that modernize SMMs’ facilities with improved energy and material efficiency, enhanced cybersecurity, and increased use of smart and advanced manufacturing technologies to reduce waste and pollution, while increasing productivity.
Through the IAC and CHP TAP programs, qualifying SMMs are eligible to receive a free assessment that can lead to lower operating costs and reduced carbon and non-carbon pollution emissions. Recommendations from the assessments offer SMMs an opportunity to take advantage of improved reliability, greater energy resilience, and more versatile fuel flexibility. The Industrial Assessment Center Implementation Grant Program will provide up to $300,000 in funding, per entity, to help eligible SMMs implement recommendations from assessments conducted between 2018 and 2023. SMMs will provide at least 50% cost share for each project. In this first round of funding, DOE will provide up to $80,000,000. Additional rounds of funding will follow in the coming months.
Additionally, DOE is soliciting applications from non-IAC or CHP TAP assessment providers to qualify assessments from other entities as “IAC-equivalent.” Qualification of third-party assessors will expand eligibility for implementation grants in future rounds, increasing funding accessibility for SMMs across the country.
For more than four decades, the IAC Program has provided more than 20,000 assessments at SMMs, which comprise more than 90% of the nation’s manufacturing base. IACs typically identify more than $130,000 in potential annual savings opportunities for every manufacturer assessed. CHP TAPs, a regional network of technical assistance providers, promote and assist in transforming the market for combined heat and power throughout the United States. CHP, also known as cogeneration, is an efficient technology that generates electricity and uses the thermal energy that is otherwise wasted as heat to provide steam or hot water, achieving overall efficiencies of up to 80%. It can help manufacturers lower operating costs and reduce carbon emissions while offering fuel flexibility, improved reliability, and improved energy resilience.
DOE’s Office of Manufacturing and Energy Supply Chains (MESC) manages the IAC Program. Learn more about the MESC mission to strengthen and secure manufacturing and energy supply chains needed to modernize the nation’s energy infrastructure and support a clean and equitable energy transition.
Learn more about the application process here. Applications are due on Thursday, July 14, 2023, at 5 p.m. ET.