DOE to fund deployment of energy infrastructure on tribal lands

By Erin Voegele | November 22, 2019

The U.S. Department of Energy has announced it will provide up to $15 million in new funding to deploy energy infrastructure on tribal lands. Biomass, biogas and waste-to-energy systems are among those that can qualify for funding.

Funding is being made available through DOE’s Office of Indian Energy Policy and Program. According to the DOE, it will support Indian Tribes, including Alaska Native Regional Corporations and Village Corporation, Intertribal Organizations, and Tribal Energy Development Organizations, interested in developing their vast energy resources.

The DOE is soliciting applications under four topic areas. The first topic area focuses on the installation of energy generating systems and/or energy efficiency measures for tribal buildings. The second topic area includes the deployment of community-scale energy generating systems or energy storage on Tribal Lands. The third topic area focuses on the installation of energy systems for autonomous operation to power a single or multiple essential tribal facilities during emergency situations or for tribal community resilience. Finally, the fourth topic area is focused on deploying energy infrastructure and integrated energy systems to electrify tribal buildings.

The DOE said the intended results of the 50 percent cost-shared projects selected under this funding opportunity announcement (FOA) are to reduce or stabilize energy costs and increase energy security and resilience for Indian tribes and Alaska Native villages. This will further the Office of Indian Energy’s recent contributions toward DOE strategic goals: namely, promoting American energy independence by increasing domestic and international accessibility to American energy resources.

An informational webinar scheduled for Dec. 10 will provide more information on the FOA, including who is eligible to apply, what an application needs to include, cost share and other requirements, how to ask questions, and how applications will be selected for funding. Applications for the FOA are due Feb. 6. Additional information, including a full copy of the FOA, is available on the DOE website