On July 3, 2014, the U.S. Department of Energy Loans Program Office published a solicitation for Federal Loan Guarantees for Renewable Energy Projects and Efficient Energy Projects. Under the solicitation, eligible projects include Renewable Energy Projects and Efficient Energy Projects that implement “new or significantly improved technology” and “avoid, reduce, or sequester” the emission of greenhouse gases or other air pollutants, as required by the Energy Policy Act § 1703 (42 U.S.C. § 16513). The solicitation makes available $2.5 billion of loan guarantees “plus an additional amount that can be imputed based on the availability of an appropriation for the credit subsidy cost of such imputed loan guarantee authority.” DOE estimates that the total available loan guarantee authority will be “as much as $4 billion…”
DOE will give favorable consideration to projects that “will have a catalytic effect on the commercial deployment of future Renewable Energy Projects and/or Efficient Energy Projects that replicate or extend the innovative feature of the Eligible Project.” The solicitation provides a list of possible projects that exemplify the types of projects sought. Example areas include advanced grid integration and storage, drop-in biofuels, waste-to-energy, enhancement of existing facilities, and efficiency improvements. These examples are intended to be illustrative and do not limit projects in other areas meeting the requirements.
Deadlines for submission of the Part I application, which DOE uses to gage the eligibility and viability of the project, run from October 1, 2014, for the first round to December 2, 2015, for the final round. Projects whose Part I applications are approved are invited to submit a Part II application. DOE may issue conditional commitments to entities with approved Part II applications and will then enter into negotiations for the loan guarantee.