DOE Will Grant $225M to States and Local Governments to Increase Building Energy Efficiency
The US Department of Energy has published a notice of intent to award $225 million to state and local governments to enhance building energy efficiency.
The Department of Energy is urging governments to increase the implementation of the most recent building energy codes and to assist in creating energy-efficient buildings.
The funds are part of the infrastructure bill that was enacted late last year, and the Department of Energy estimates that it may save businesses and communities up to $138 billion over the next 30 years.
The Department of Energy asserts that building standards are vital because they enable advancements in energy efficiency and make structures more durable and resistant to adverse weather.
The initiative supports the National Initiative to Advance Building Rules, which was launched by the National Climate Task Force in June 2022 to expedite the implementation of contemporary building codes to improve resilience and reduce energy costs.
Buildings have long been part of the nation's energy transition goals. According to the Energy Information Administration, commercial and government buildings account for 35 per cent of all electricity and 16 per cent of carbon emissions in the United States. According to the EPA, 30% of the energy used by commercial buildings goes to waste.
This has led cities such as Denver and Las Vegas to develop systems and rules to combat energy use and building emissions. The Better Buildings effort of the Department of Energy is estimated to have saved $15,3 billion, and earlier this year, the department imposed stricter requirements on federal buildings.
The Department of Energy is not alone in requesting that state and local governments use infrastructure funds for energy efficiency. 59 organisations issued a letter to 14 states earlier this year requesting that they use such money to promote energy efficiency, including buildings.
Other building efficiency programmes include the Resilient and Efficient Codes Implementation Programme, which will award funds to demonstrate creative techniques that enable states and local governments to increase their energy goals. The Building Energy Codes Programme of the Department of Energy offers research, technical help, and money for the implementation of building codes.
The $1.2 trillion infrastructure package was enacted in November 2021 and includes $65 billion in DOE funding for energy efficiency initiatives, including $120 million for the industrial and manufacturing sectors. As a separate component of this bill, the EPA began distributing billions of dollars to states in late 2021 to rebuild water infrastructure.
Source: Environmental Leader