Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Governor Announces Renewable Energy Grants

Gov. Bill Ritter and Energy Office Director Tom Plant announced today that more than $370,000 in New Energy Economic Development (NEED) grants are being awarded to eight organizations in biomass, energy efficiency, wind, solar and other projects to help create jobs and strengthen local economies.

The Governor’s Energy Office administers the grants using "clean energy" funds, which are funded by gaming revenues and do not draw money from the state's general fund.

“NEED grants allow organizations and communities to make strategic investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects that will put people to work and strengthen local economies in the short-term,” Ritter said. “In the long-term, these grants support our New Energy Economy through clean, modern energy and build healthy, sustainable and vibrant communities.”

The clean energy fund grants are from gaming revenues.

The Governor's Energy Office received 57 applications seeking nearly $3 million in grant funding for the third round of NEED grants, according to a press release issued by the governor's office.

The eight grant projects will leverage $552,999 in public-private local matching funds, said the press release, and bring a combined $924,120 investment to Colorado communities.

"NEED grants are highly competitive, demonstrating the depth and strength of Colorado’s New Energy Economy and the innovative nature of our Colorado businesses,” Plant said. “Projects that target investment in emerging technologies, grow the market penetration of well-established technologies and attract New Energy Economy investments to Colorado were selected.”

The eight Colorado NEED award winners include:

1. The City of Greeley, which received $82,489 to conduct a feasibility analysis for the development of a “Greeley Clean Energy Park.”

2. The Colorado Brownfields Foundation, which received $25,000 to create a model for the feasibility of using multiple renewable energy technologies, including solar, wind, biomass, and methane, at a former landfill site in Colorado Springs.

3. Energistic Systems, a Golden company, which received $100,000 for a new and innovative solar thermal system called SunTrac.

4. GARNA and The Global Biomass Network Project, Inc., two non-profit corporate partners in Salida, which received $100,000 in matching funds to support the development of a waste wood diversion/gasification project at the Chaffee County landfill.

5. Hybrids Plus, Inc., a Boulder company, which received $25,000 to design and develop a second generation extended-range battery for plug-in hybrid vehicles in correlation with Xcel Energy’s Smart Grid City Project.

6. Lotus Energy Solutions, a Telluride-based firm, which received $832.00 in matching funds to acquire a duct blaster and software to allow San Miguel County homes to be rated on energy use and become ENERGY STAR certified.

7. Nexajoule, Inc., a Boulder corporation, which received $25,000 to refine designs and conduct field testing on an energy efficient evaporative chiller that can supplement or replace refrigerant-based air conditioning systems.

8. Southeast CO RC&D, based in Lamar, which received a $12,800 grant to install “Fat Spaniel” technology on farm-scale wind turbines to increase the agriculture community’s knowledge base, heighten interest and demonstrate the application of wind technology in eastern Colorado.

The Governor's Energy Office has awarded two previous NEED grant rounds in 2008, totaling $1,006,600.00 for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects throughout the state.