The US department of Energy has included energy storage projects in a US$4 billion loan guarantee programme announced yesterday.
The programme is intended to help support new renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in the US that help to mitigate greenhouse gases, as part of President Obama's Climate Action Plan.
The department singled out advanced grid integration and storage as a core focus.
The loan guarantee programme is aimed at supporting the deployment market ready clean technology to scale in the US, to aid finance for projects that improve renewable energy variability, dispatchability, congestion, and control, for example by funding demand response or local storage.
The department hopes this will allow greater grid compatibility, so renewables can take a larger role in US power generation.
The department also identified preferential projects as: drop-in biofuels, waste-to-energy, enhancement to hydro power, and efficiency improvements as key areas of interest.
The loan guarantee was awarded from the department’s Loan Programs Office.
As part of the Renewable Energy and Efficient Energy Projects Loan Guarantee Solicitation, a 30-day comment period to gain public commentary with six public meetings was held in advance of the loan’s announcement.
Energy secretary Ernest Moniz said it was “critical” to “address the effects of climate change and protect our children’s future”, adding that the investment would provide economic opportunity and jumpstart low carbon and clean technology industries.
Previous loan guarantees have supported PV, CSP and wind projects, including the world's largest PV project, Agua Caliente.