The Department of Energy (DOE) and the Department of the Treasury have announced $502 million in the first round of awards from an American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) program that provides cash assistance to energy production companies in place of earned tax credits. The new funding creates additional up-front capital, enabling companies to create jobs and begin construction that may have been stalled until now.
‘The initiative will help double our renewable energy capacity over the next few years and make sure America leads the world in creating the clean energy economy of the future,’ says Energy Secretary Steven Chu.
Created under Section 1603 of ARRA, the program is expected to provide more than $3 billion in financial support for clean energy projects by providing direct payments in lieu of tax credits. These payments will support an estimated 5,000 wind, solar, biomass and other types of renewable energy production facilities in all regions of the country over the life of the program.
As a result of this first round of funding, more than 2,000 Americans will have access to jobs in the renewable energy industry – both in construction and in manufacturing – while moving the nation closer to meeting the Obama administration's goal of doubling renewable energy generation in the next few years.
The Treasury opened the application process for the 1603 program on July 31 and is now making the first awards in half the statutorily mandated turnaround time of 60 days. Additional awards under the program will be announced in the coming weeks.
SOURCE: Department of Energy