Stimulus Green for Energy Efficiency at Standstill

Posted by Energy Wire on August 18, 2010 at 11:34 AM

We're all feeling the results of the recession, but intended relief was on the way when it came to energy efficiency.
Last year Congress implemented a $3.2 billion economic stimulus package to provide jobs and improve the nation's efficiency standard.

According to an audit by the inspector general of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), a mere 8.4 percent of the stimulus funds have been deployed.

The program was supposed to provide funding for more energy efficient heating and cooling systems in city buildings, as well as generate new jobs.

So what slowed the distribution of the funds?

It seems as though when the stimulus program was approved, DOE did not have the resources available to process the applications from local governments, and stunted progress by implementing provisions that ultimately brought funds distribution to a halt. Inspector General Gregory H. Friedman said, “With very good intentions, Congress put in so many controls, so many provisions, that the state and local governments have not been able to spend the money as expeditiously as planned".

DOE has since lessened some of these provisions and claims that the stimulus program was more successful than what was actually shown in the audit.

Read more here ( and to read the audit visit DOE here (

Photo credit: Some rights reserved by jbelluch

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