Governor Rendell: State Investment of $9.2 Million to Support Alternative Energy Projects That Conserve Energy, Cut Costs, Create Jobs

Jan 21, 2010, 13:54 ET from Pennsylvania Office of the Governor

CFA Also Approves $150,000 Tourism Loan for Business in PA Wilds Region

HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 21 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Pennsylvania will strengthen its position as a leader in energy innovation and will help to create about 170 jobs with the latest round of investments from the state's ambitious Alternative Energy Investment Fund, Governor Edward G. Rendell said today.

The $9.2 million in grants and loans the Commonwealth Financing Authority approved today, he added, will benefit seven projects throughout the state that are showing how alternative energy can conserve resources and cut expenses -- two aspects that are critical to Pennsylvania's long-term economic competitiveness.

"These projects, once completed, will illustrate how alternative energy technologies can go a long way to helping consumers of all types -- families, businesses and municipalities -- reduce their consumption of costly, traditional fuels in favor of cleaner, renewable sources that often are no-cost alternatives," said Governor Rendell. "Moving to a green economy is essential for our future if we're to be competitive globally. Doing that work today provides a boost because it opens the door to new private investment and creates new employment opportunities."

The Commonwealth Financing Authority administers Pennsylvania's economic stimulus programs, including portions of the $650 million Alternative Energy Investment Fund. 

The CFA today also approved a $150,000 tourism loan through the First Industries Fund to Bald Eagle Truck Stop Inc., Clinton County, for a new $520,000 construction project at the convenience store and gas station -- a popular stop for visitors to the state's PA Wilds region.

For more information on programs available through the Department of Community and Economic Development, visit or call 1-866-466-3972.

Editor's Note:  The seven energy projects approved by the CFA today are listed below, by county: 

Cumberland County

The Big Spring School District will receive a $180,000 alternative and clean energy loan to install a geothermal system in its Plainfield Elementary School. The existing school does not meet educational or occupancy standards for students and will be replaced with a new building at the same site that plans to be rated LEED Gold. The proposed 60,000-square-foot school serves 450 students. The total project cost is $1.7 million.

KBI Industries Inc. will receive a $1 million loan guarantee and a $2 million grant from the alternative and clean energy program for an $11 million upgrade of its bio-refinery production facility in Hampden Township. The upgrade will save 33 million gallons of water per year while allowing the facility to produce 30 million more gallons of biodiesel per year. The project will add 27 new jobs. 

Huntingdon County

Huntingdon Borough will receive a $25,000 renewable energy program loan to purchase and install a geothermal system at its municipal building, which is the third-largest energy consumer in the borough. The geothermal system will eliminate its reliance on natural gas and save 60 percent in energy costs, or more than $3,800 per year. The total project cost is $140,816.

Juniata County

Energex American Inc. will receive a $525,000 loan and a $150,000 grant from the alternative and clean energy program to help expand its wood pellet production facility in Walker Township. The project will double production capacity by purchasing feed stock handling equipment and replacing an old system with one powered by biomass. The upgrades will reduce energy costs and emissions, and eliminate the use of propane. The $5.45 million project will create 15 new jobs at its Mifflintown plant. 

Montgomery County

CeeLite Technologies LLC will receive a $494,574 alternative and clean energy program grant to install new manufacturing equipment at its plant in Hatfield Township. The plant will commercialize, manufacture and distribute the company's lighting technology, which is more efficient than LED lighting. The product design emphasizes the use of biodegradable and/or recyclable materials and environmentally sound manufacturing. The proposed project, which is just under $1 million, will create 100 new jobs.

Jeff Fanok, Douglass Township, will receive a $16,782 renewable energy program loan for the purchase and installation of a geothermal system in his 1,600-square-foot residence. Instead of oil, Fanok will heat his home with a closed-loop geothermal heating and cooling system, which will replace a 25-year-old oil burner and is anticipated to save him $778 per year. The total project cost is $33,500.

Northumberland County

IntelliWatt Renewable Energy LLC will receive a $4.98 million alternative and clean energy program loan to assist with the construction of a 13 megawatt biomass energy facility in Mt. Carmel Township. It is the region's first biomass energy system and will generate nearly 205,000 megawatt hours of electricity per year -- enough to power approximately 20,000 homes. Additionally, the power will be sold to PPL, creating another revenue opportunity for the company. The project will create 31 jobs in three years and cost $9.9 million to complete.

Media contacts:

Theresa Elliott, DCED; 717-783-1132

Michael Smith, Governor's Office; 717-783-1116

SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the Governor