This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

June 20, 2007

DOE to Invest $40 Million in Research for Energy Efficient Housing

DOE issued a funding opportunity announcement on June 13th that offers up to $40 million to support the research, development, and deployment of technologies for energy efficient homes. The selected projects are expected to reduce home energy use by 30% to 90%. The goals of this opportunity are to provide new energy efficient products to the market, incorporate innovations into home design, cut construction time, limit waste, and improve builder productivity. DOE anticipates selecting 4 to 8 applications for projects that research the energy efficiency of homes and develop formulae for construction of new homes on a community scale.

Subject to Congressional appropriations, the investment for these cost-shared projects would total $50 million, with applicants expected to provide 20% of the overall funding. Funding would begin in fiscal year 2008 and continue through fiscal year 2012. This opportunity is part of DOE's Building America project, which seeks to enable the cost-effective production of zero-energy homes that annually produce as much energy as they use by 2020. See the DOE press release, the funding opportunity announcement, and the Building America Web site.

While DOE is encouraging the production of energy efficient homes, the agency is also working to promote energy efficiency in federal buildings. In mid-June, the Federal Energy Management Program in DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy earned a White House Closing the Circle award for organizing and directing the Interagency Sustainability Working Group. This group led the efforts of more than 300 environmental professionals from 20 federal agencies to create first-of-their-kind federal standards for hundreds of federal construction projects, leading to the design, construction, and operation of dozens of energy efficient buildings. See the DOE press release.