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

December 07, 2011

Tribal Clean Energy Assistance Offered by DOE

DOE launched on December 2 the Strategic Technical Assistance Response Team (START) initiative aimed at advancing clean energy generation in Indian Country. The initiative provides federally recognized Native American and Alaska Native governments with technical assistance to accelerate clean energy project deployment. This effort furthers DOE's commitment to providing tribes with the tools and resources they need to foster tribal energy self-sufficiency and sustainability, and to advancing economic competitiveness and job creation.

Through START, DOE and national laboratory experts will work directly with community-based project teams to evaluate financial and technical feasibility. The experts will also provide early development technical assistance to better position these projects for financing and construction. The initiative complements the DOE's Office of Indian Energy's efforts to make reliable and technical information and training available to tribal communities throughout the United States.

The START initiative will further serve to help Native American and Alaska Native communities increase local generation capacity, enhance energy efficiency and conservation measures, and create entrepreneurial and job opportunities in the new clean energy economy. Awards through this initiative will be provided through two programs. Tribes selected for the START program will be paired with DOE experts who have clean energy deployment experience relevant to the selected tribe's project development stage and technology. And, under the Alaska START Program, selected Alaska Native participants will leverage the combined technical expertise and resources of DOE and the Denali Commission for training to further clean energy projects such as energy storage infrastructure, renewable energy deployment, and housing energy efficiency. Concept applications are due January 15, 2012. See the DOE press release and the Office of Indian Energy's START website.