The US Department of Energy (DOE) has opened a solicitation process to offer around $8bn in loan guarantees for innovative advanced fossil-energy projects and expects to receive initial applications by the end of February 2014.
The loan guarantees the new solicitation, authorised by Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, will finance to support new fossil-energy projects that will use innovative technologies to reduce carbon dioxide, methane and other greenhouse gas emissions.
The technologies being financed include advanced resource development, carbon capture, low-carbon power systems, and efficiency improvements at the projects.
Municipalities, universities and port authorities will also be eligible for the latest advanced fossil energy projects solicitation. Universities can seek funds for microgrid projects.
The DOE released a draft solicitation on 9 July 2013 and has invited comments from potential applicants and other stakeholders that lasted for 60 days.
The department then incorporated the feedback it received during the comment period into the solicitation that included new provisions to facilitate applications, ensure quick review and foster successful public-private partnerships.
Administered by the Loan Programs Office (LPO), the programs enable DOE to work with private companies and lenders to reduce the financing risks associated with clean energy projects, promoting their development.
The loan programs, which enables small businesses to obtain term loans or lines of credit to help them grow and expand their businesses, include three separate programs under Section 1703 of Title XVII; Section 1705 of Title XVII; and Under Section 136 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.
Under Section 1703, the department will guarantee loans for projects that employ advanced energy technologies to reduce or sequester air pollutants or greenhouse gases.
The DOE has received billions of dollars for the program under the 2005 Energy Policy Act, but most of the funds remained unused as the program has been under scrutiny after allegations of mismanagement of public money following Solyndra went bankrupt in 2011 even after receiving a loan-guarantee.