- Monday, January 24, 2022
Tribes Highlighted to Benefit From U.S. Department of Energy’s "Building a Better Grid" Initiative Grants
Last week, the Department of Energy announced the “Building a Better Grid” initiative. An effort aimed to upgrade the nation’s aging electric grid while investing dollars to support the development of sustainable energy and creating good-paying jobs. Among the targeted stakeholders, Tribes are highlighted specifically as those who will have opportunities to benefit from the soon-to-be-available grant funds.
The new initiative is a part of President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law that aims to propel the implementation of energy solutions like wind, solar, and energy-efficient technologies to address the nation’s aging power grid.
Of the $20 billion dollars in federal funding dedicated to financing tools, $10 billion will be disbursed in the form of grants for states, Tribes and utilities to enhance grid resilience and prevent power outages. The efforts are a direct response to President Biden’s goal of reaching 100% clean electricity by 2035 and a zero emissions economy by 2050.
“Clean air, clean water, and clean energy are fundamental to the health and well-being of every American. Today’s launch of the Building a Better Grid Initiative takes important steps to upgrade and expand the electric grid so that more Americans can benefit from affordable and abundant clean energy.” said U.S. Representative Kathy Castor (FL-14), Chair, House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis.
Alaska’s resiliency as a state relies, in part, on the clean air and waters for healthy communities and sustainable economic resources. Given the unique power transmission challenges that Alaskan villages face and the need for aggressively seeking clean, sustainable and resilient energy solutions within these communities, anticipation is building amongst stakeholders as they see where Alaska projects will stack up in the grant proposal processes.
Powerlines and wind turbines in Kongiganak, Alaska. Photo by Amanda Byrd