On June 1, U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Steven Chu announced plans to provide $256 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (Recovery Act) to support energy-efficiency improvements in major industrial sectors across the American economy.

The funding is targeted at reducing the energy consumption of America's manufacturing and information technology (IT) industries, while creating jobs and stimulating economic growth. These programs will help create manufacturing jobs quickly, along with jobs for technicians and experts who will be needed in the long-term to maintain and operate the new equipment.

Projects being funded under the Recovery Act will focus on the following three main areas:
  • Combined Heat and Power (CHP), District Energy Systems, Waste Energy Recovery Systems, and Efficient Industrial Equipment ($156 Million) -This funding is targeted toward projects that represent proven and effective near-term energy options that can be deployed in industrial and residential settings to improve efficiency, control costs, and limit greenhouse gas emissions. The DOE’s Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) has initiatives, including its Industrial Distributed Energy research and development projects focused on cross-cutting technologies such as CHP that are intended to reduce industry's energy consumption.

  • Advanced Materials in Support of Advanced Clean Energy Technologies and Energy-Intensive Processes ($50 Million) - DOE will support research, development, and demonstration (RD&D) projects for advanced industrial materials that can be used in fuel flexibility programs, CHP technologies, energy-intensive processes, and nanomaterials and nanomanufacturing. These projects will help the American industrial sector increase competitiveness while rapidly introducing advanced technologies.

  • Improved Energy Efficiency for Information and Communication Technology ($50 Million) - This project will select and fund applicants to conduct RD&D projects to promote new technologies that improve energy efficiency in the growing information and communication technology (ICT) sector.