Federal Energy Department Awards $432,000 to Energy Office

In July 2005, U.S. Department of Energy awarded $432,000 in State Energy Program funds to the Energy Office for use in Fiscal Year 2005-2006. This grant is part of $44 million being distributed to the fifty states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. State funds totaling $86,400 are required matching funds for the grant.

State Energy Program grants support and encourage state specific energy-saving and efficiency goals. “These grants will help states improve energy efficiency in ways that meet their individual needs,” said Secretary Bodman. In Nebraska, State Energy Program funds have supported projects such as the Dollar and Energy Saving Loan Program, publication of the Nebraska Energy Quarterly, maintenance of the Energy Office website providing distribution of information to consumers and compilation and management of the state’s energy statistics data base.

Three New Grants Fund Special Projects
In August 2005, the Energy Office received notification three of five projects it had submitted were selected for funding through the nation-wide competitive process under the State Energy Program — Special Projects Solicitation.

  • Rebuild Nebraska $100,000, matched with $125,486 from the partners. The Energy System Laboratory at the Rebuild Nebraska logoUniversity of Nebraska-Lincoln and Omaha Public Power District will build on its previous Rebuild America work and help 20 commercial building owners to implement the Continuous Commissioning process and retrofit improvements using energy service contractors. The project team plans to create and identify at least 10 ENERGY STAR® buildings and to share the energy technologies and project results.
  • Codes and Standards $24,725, matched with $9,972 from the Energy Office. The Energy Office will work with codes trainingthe state building officials and inspectors organization and the International Code Council to offer code certification trainings and examinations for residential energy inspector and examiners, commercial energy inspectors and commercial energy plan examiners. Training opportunities will also be extended to architects and engineers in the state. A recent survey discovered that none of the officials with codes certification responsibilities in Nebraska are certified in any of the three categories.
  • Industrial Technologies $100,000, matched with $96,302 from the project partners. The Energy Systems Laboratory at the University of Nebraska Lincoln, along with engineering and marketing experts from Omaha Public Power District, will boost implementation of the advanced Industry Technologies Program (ITP) in Nebraska’s industrial sector because of the potential for significant energy and cost savings. The team will recruit at least 10 industrial participants. Assessments will identify energy efficiency opportunities and estimated implementation costs on these facilities. Two industrial facilities, with annual energy costs over $2 million, will be identified for case studies. Comprehensive energy studies will be performed to provide more accurate energy savings and project costs. Recommended improvements and processes will be funded by the facility owners. During the implementation, the process activities and energy savings will be documented and verified. The project also includes workshops to demonstrate the energy technologies to industrial owners, facility operating staff, engineers, and design professionals.

The three Special Projects grants total $224,275 in federal funds. The cost-share committed in the proposals totals $231,422. The total planned cost of the three projects equals $455,697.

As of June 30, 2005, the Energy Office was awarded 18 State Energy Program — Special Projects grants. Federal funds awarded, from 1996 — 2004 totaled $2,097,173. The obligated cost share/leveraging committed in the proposals totaled $4,283,308, but the actual cost share/leverage was $11,525,989.20. The total of all projects was $13,623,162.20.

The Department of Energy maintains a listing of Nebraska projects financed, in whole or part, with funds from the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy. A more detailed listing of State Energy Program activities in Nebraska is maintained by the Energy Office.

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