Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program
The Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) Program, funded for the first time by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act) of 2009, represents a Presidential priority to deploy the cheapest, cleanest, and most reliable energy technologies we have—energy efficiency and conservation—across the country. The Program, authorized in Title V, Subtitle E of the Energy Independence and Security Act (EISA) and signed into law on December 19, 2007, is modeled after the Community Development Block Grant program administered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). It is intended to assist U.S. cities, counties, states, territories, and Indian tribes to develop, promote, implement, and manage energy efficiency and conservation projects and programs designed to:
- Reduce fossil fuel emissions;
- Reduce the total energy use of the eligible entities;
- Improve energy efficiency in the transportation, building, and other appropriate sectors; and
- Create and retain jobs.
Through formula and competitive grants, the Program empowers local communities to make strategic investments to meet the nation's long-term goals for energy independence and leadership on climate change.
Funding for the EECBG Program under the Recovery Act totals $3.2 billion. Of this amount, approximately $2.7 billion will be awarded through formula grants. In addition, approximately $454 million will be allocated through competitive grants, which will be awarded through a separate, future Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA). A request for information (RFI) has been released (September 14, 2009) for feedback from EECBG stakeholders on this planned FOA. The RFI closes on September 28, 2009. The remaining funds will be used to provide a suite of technical assistance tools to state, local, and tribal grantees.
Cities and Counties
Governments ineligible for direct formula grants from DOE are still eligible for competitive funds from DOE or program funds from their State Energy Office. To find contact information for your State Energy Office, visit the National Association of State Energy Officials Web site.
Use of Funds
Grants can be used for energy efficiency and conservation programs and projects communitywide, as well as renewable energy installations on government buildings. Activities eligible for use of funds include the following:
- Development of an energy efficiency and conservation strategy
- Building energy audits and retrofits, including weatherization
- Financial incentive programs for energy efficiency such as energy savings performance contracting, on-bill financing, and revolving loan funds
- Transportation programs to conserve energy and support renewable fuel infrastructure
- Building code development, implementation, and inspections
- Installation of distributed energy technologies including combined heat and power and district heating and cooling systems
- Material conservation programs including source reduction, recycling, and recycled content procurement programs
- Reduction and capture of greenhouse gas emissions generated by landfills or similar waste-related sources
- Installation of energy efficient traffic signals and street lighting
- Installation of renewable energy technologies on government buildings
- Any other appropriate activity that meets the purposes of the program and is approved by DOE