PA Energy Development Authority Awards $10 Million For Clean Energy Projects; Projects Create Jobs, Stimulate Investment in Commonwealth

Jun 23, 2005, 01:00 ET from Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection

    HARRISBURG, Pa., June 23 /PRNewswire/ -- The Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority today awarded $10 million to help finance 17 clean energy projects in the commonwealth. The funding represents the first awards by the newly revitalized PEDA as the state works to build an energy manufacturing base that will realize significant environmental benefits, economic growth and enhanced homeland security.     "We, in Pennsylvania, have the ingenuity and resources to develop and deploy new clean energy technology," Environmental Protection Secretary Kathleen A. McGinty said. "Our commonwealth is offering significant financial incentives to make energy manufacturing a cornerstone in the state's economic future and ensure that more electricity generation comes from environmentally beneficial sources. PEDA refocuses our priorities on indigenous energy resources by investing in clean, efficient energy made in Pennsylvania."     The 17 selected projects will receive financial assistance in the form of grants or loans for a variety of electric power projects, including wind, solar, biomass, waste coal and coal gasification, and comprehensive redevelopment plans, among others. The state financing supports millions of dollars in funding being invested into the projects by private interests.     These projects also will stimulate the state economy, creating as many as 1,786 permanent construction jobs in the commonwealth. In addition, the research projects, if successful, could net as many as 327 full-time jobs.     Projects were evaluated on a variety of criteria, including their ability to promote Pennsylvania's indigenous energy resources, encourage energy diversity and enhance energy security. The projects were judged on their potential to create jobs and stimulate investment in the commonwealth. Potential environmental benefits, as well as technical feasibility and cost- effectiveness, were also considered.     PEDA was established in 1982 to promote applied energy research, provide financial incentives for the deployment of clean, alternative energy projects and promote investment in Pennsylvania's energy sector. After a period of inactivity, Gov. Edward G. Rendell revitalized PEDA as part of his strategy to build a clean, indigenous, diversified energy industry in the state.     Rendell, members of the General Assembly and legislative leaders have been working aggressively to put in place policies and financial tools designed to promote advanced energy projects in the state. Pennsylvania is home to one of the nation's most progressive alternative energy portfolio standards, ensuring that in 15 years, 18 percent of all of the energy generated comes from clean, efficient sources. Pennsylvania is one of two states with a portfolio standard that includes energy efficiency.     On Dec. 15, the Governor signed an executive order, "Energy Management and Conservation in Commonwealth," that ensures maximum efficiency in energy management and conservation in state facilities through the implementation of a centralized energy strategy. This measure will decrease energy consumption and energy costs and promote a cleaner environment.     Currently, DEP is receiving applications for the Pennsylvania Energy Harvest Grant Program, which funds projects that save resources, improve the environment, spur economic growth and job creation, and enhance homeland security. The program awarded $10 million and leveraged another $26.7 million in private funds since its inception May 2003.     Rendell's Growing Greener II initiative is critical to expanding Energy Harvest and building on the success that the program and other energy initiatives already have achieved. Pennsylvania voters overwhelmingly approved a $625 million bond initiative in the May 17 primary election, and the administration and Legislature are working to enact enabling legislation to fund a vast array of environmental initiatives included in Growing Greener II.     For more information on PEDA, visit DEP's Web site at, Keyword: "PEDA." To download an application for the current Energy Harvest grant round, which ends July 22, use Keyword: "Energy Harvest."      EDITOR'S NOTE:  Following is a list by county of the 17 projects that received funding through PEDA for clean energy projects.      ALLEGHENY COUNTY     -- PFBC Environmental Energy Technology Inc. will receive $1 million to        design, construct and commission a Process Rest Facility capable of        burning a wide variety of Pennsylvania waste coals.     -- EQA Landmark Communities will receive $413,477 to develop 300 acres of        brownfields in South Fayette Township. The project will focus on        creating homes and buildings that are energy efficient and green. Some        homes will be designed to achieve zero energy status.     -- Capital Technologies Inc. will receive $162,629 to purchase and modify        a natural gas micro-turbine to run on neat biodiesel, commonly called        B100, to generate electricity.     -- Plextronics Inc. will receive $300,000 to fund the research necessary        for development of the next generation of solar cells based on polymer        technology.      CAMBRIA COUNTY     -- Pristine Resources Inc. will receive $3.5 million to convert waste        heat from a 1.7-million-tons-per-year coking operation into an        operation that will produce 130 megawatts of electricity annually. The        project will create 179 jobs at the coking operation and another 500        jobs in three coal mines that would be reopened to provide feedstock        to the plant. Another 1,000 jobs would be created to construct the        project.      CENTRE COUNTY     -- Penn State University will receive $182,919 to obtain performance data        from a suite of biofuels indigenous to Pennsylvania.     -- Penn State University will receive $130,342 to develop a novel solid        absorbent that can be used to remove hydrogen sulfides and carbon        dioxide from the coal and biomass gasification streams.      CHESTER COUNTY     -- Southeastern Chester County Refuse Authority will receive $500,000 to        develop a landfill gas collection system to produce 6.9 million        kilowatt hours of electricity annually.     -- Franklin Fuel Cells Inc. will receive $460,000 to research ongoing        development of solid oxide fuel cell technology.      ELK COUNTY     -- C/G Electrodes LLC will receive $491,114 to install two UTC Power        PureCycle 200 units to produce electricity from the waste heat        generated by the company's normal operations.      LANCASTER COUNTY     -- PPL Energy Services Holdings LLC will receive $650,000 to develop a        3,200-kilowatt landfill gas-to-energy project in Conestoga.      LUZERNE COUNTY     -- Community Energy Inc. will receive $1 million to build a 24-megawatt        utility-scale wind farm using Gamesa turbines to produce 73,000        megawatt hours annually. The project will create three full-time        positions and as many as 50 construction jobs.      MULTIPLE COUNTIES     -- Advanced Fibers & Powders LLC will receive $139,960 to develop an        integrated carbon activation and gasification process that uses        cleaner-burning anthracite coal as the primary feedstock for        electricity generation.     -- The Energy Coordinating Agency will receive $264,546 to create a        successful ENERGY STAR affordable housing program throughout        Pennsylvania.     -- Advanced Energy Partners LLC will receive $425,000 to develop and        install a 600-kilowatt dispatchable aggregate power plant.     -- AFC First Financial Corp. will receive $77,337 to expand the Keystone        Home Energy Loan Program (HELP).      WESTMORELAND COUNTY     -- Solar Power Industries Inc. will receive $302,676 to research        potential nontraditional means to increase available feedstock of        solar-grade silicon, which is used for the manufacture of solar cells.      CONTACT:  Ana Gomez               (717) 787-1323  

SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection