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Press Room:  For Immediate Release 
Explore, Enjoy and Protect the Planet

April 21, 2010

Contact: Kristina Johnson

Vice President Biden Announces Federal Grants to Support Clean Energy Jobs, Energy Savings
Communities to Receive $452 Million for "Retrofit Ramp-Up" Efforts

Washington, D.C. - Today, Vice President Biden announced that the Department of Energy will award $452 million dollars in federal grants to twenty-five cities and states across the country for innovative new "Retrofit Ramp-Up" programs that create clean energy jobs while helping families and businesses save energy and money. The effort is part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which included more than $80 billion in investment in clean energy. 

"These new initiatives will go a long way towards making a vibrant, clean energy economy a reality," said Sierra Club representative Allison Forbes. "Making our homes more energy efficient will create good, family-supporting jobs and help Americans save money on their energy bills. It will also help reduce our country's dependence on fossil fuels."

The Department of Energy chose communities that were determined to have the best proposals for energy retrofit programs. Many of these programs include training construction workers, empowering contractors, and creating financing mechanisms that will help building owners and homeowners pay for retrofits over time while seeing much lower energy bills.

"These communities are set to create one-stop shopping for clean energy," said Forbes. "We look forward to seeing all the pieces come together. We'll have contractors trained and ready to do the work, homeowners informed and asking for efficiency upgrades, financing and funding available to make it all possible." 

Sierra Club advocates for strong clean energy policies that support these programs and drive continued investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy. Sierra Club helped pass the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act in 2009 to deliver the environmental and economic benefits of a clean energy economy and strengthen communities across the country through programs like this one.

"These competitive grants have encouraged communities to be innovative," Forbes said. "In order to get the funds, communities had to bring private capital to the table and collaborate with local, state and federal governments, as well as business and labor allies. This is a cutting-edge program. We're very excited about these efforts and hope to use them as models across America."

Cities receiving funds include:
Austin, Texas - $10 million
Boulder County, Colorado - $25 million
Camden, New Jersey - $5 million
Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning - $25 million 
Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance, Ohio - $17 million
Greensboro, North Carolina - $5 million 
Indianapolis, Indiana - $10 million
Kansas City, Missouri - $20 million
Los Angeles County, California - $30 million
Lowell, Massachusetts - $5 million
State of Maine - $30 million
State of Maryland - $20 million
State of Michigan - $30 million
State of Missouri - $5 million
Omaha, Nebraska - $10 million
State of New Hampshire - $10 million
New York State Research and Development Authority - $40 million
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - $25 million
Phoenix, Arizona - $25 million
Portland, Oregon - $20 million
San Antonio, Texas - $10 million
Seattle, Washington - $20 million
Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance - $20 million
Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority, Ohio - $15 million
Wisconsin Energy Conservation Corporation  - $20 million

For more information on the selected projects, visit HERE. 

For more information about the Sierra Club's work to promote clean energy, visit

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