WASHINGTON, Sept. 16 (UPI) --
The Obama administration announced Wednesday more than $120 million in efforts to support clean energy through innovation, including in solar power and other energy sources.
According to the White House, the effort will be deployed across 24 states in an attempt to promote
smart, simple, low-cost technologies to help America transition to cleaner and more distributed energy sources, help households save on their energy bills, and to address climate change.
Under Obama's presidency, the cost of home solar energy systems has fallen nearly 50 percent, the deployment of solar energy increased nearly 20 times and the number of homes with rooftop solar power jumped from 66,000 to 734,000, the White House said.
Solar energy is now cost-competitive with traditional energy, such as coal or gas, in 14 states. Vice President Joe Biden was scheduled to speak on the initiative Wednesday afternoon at the Solar Power International Conference in Anaheim, Calif.
As part of the effort, the Department of Energy announced the finalist teams teams in its
SunShot Prize competition, which offers cash prizes of $10 million.
The competition asks teams to find ways to reduce the amount of time it takes for people and businesses to plug in solar power systems after receiving a permit.
The Energy Department also announced more than $52 million will be used to
support 22 new projects in partnership with companies, non-profit organizations, universities and national laboratories that aim to make solar energy more affordable and accessible across the nation.
In addition, up to $50 million in new funding will advance solar photovoltaic technology ... to reduce the total cost of solar energy, and enable cutting-edge solar technologies, tools and services to swiftly enter the marketplace, a statement released by the Energy Department said.
The Department of Agriculture is also awarding nine grants of nearly $8 million to
help reduce energy costs for residents in remote rural areas that struggle with a higher cost of electricity.
Source: United Press International
(September 16, 2015 - 10:53 AM EDT)
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