These news items are aggregated from the U.S. Government trade agencies. For older news items, please visit the agencies’ web sites directly.
A 531 MW run-of-river hydroelectric power plant to be built in Chile received a structured project finance loan from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). The power plant will be a key generation facility for Santiago and reduce electricity costs, as well as greenhouse gas emissions, in a country that has become increasingly reliant on coal and diesel generation plants. [December 2013]
Building on President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to continue America’s leadership in clean energy innovation, the U.S. Department of Energy announced $150 million in clean energy tax credits for 12 businesses to build U.S. capabilities in clean energy manufacturing. The awards will support thousands of new manufacturing jobs in nine states and dozens of supply chains throughout the United States. [December 2013]
October – November 2013
NOTE: Due to the lapse in federal appropriations, this section combines two months of news.
The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) published its FY 2014 Economic Development Assistance Programs Federal Funding Opportunity (FFO) on grants.gov. Under this FFO, EDA solicits applications from applicants in rural and urban areas to provide investments that support construction, non-construction, technical assistance, and revolving loan fund projects under EDA’s Public Works and Economic Adjustment Assistance programs. Development priorities include Global Competitiveness Projects that support high-growth businesses and innovation-based entrepreneurs to expand and compete in global markets, especially investments that expand U.S. exports, encourage foreign direct investment, and promote the repatriation of jobs back to the United States. [November 2013]
The Honorable Leocadia I. Zak, Director of the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, has been named one of 50 Smart Grid Pioneers in 2013 by Smart Grid Today, a leading trade publication that delivers comprehensive daily reporting on emerging trends, applications and policies driving the modern utility industry. Director Zak, who joins a prestigious list of industry leaders, entrepreneurs, utility executives and regulators, was recognized for leading USTDA's extensive efforts to promote smart grid deployment in emerging economies around the world. [November 2013]
Leading global solar energy services and technology provider SunEdison (NYSE:SUNE) today announced it had secured R1.8 billion (US$185 million) in foreign debt funding from the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). This amounts to 75% of the R2.4 billion project cost for the Boshof Solar Park Project, located in South Africa’s Free State province. Electricity generated by Boshof, with an installed capacity of 60MW AC, will feed into the South African grid, under the terms of a 20-year power purchase and implementation agreement signed with national power utility Eskom and the Department of Energy. The plant is scheduled to begin generating electricity in the fourth quarter of 2014. [November 2013]
SunEdison, IFC and OPIC close US$100.4MM Project Financing Arrangement for the Largest Merchant Solar Plant in Latin America
SunEdison, Inc., a leading worldwide solar energy services provider today announced the closing of a $100.4 million non-recourse debt financing arrangement with the OPIC and IFC. The debt proceeds will be used in Chile for the construction of a 50.7 MWp solar power plant, to inject energy directly into the Central Interconnected System, selling all its production in the spot market (merchant solar). Interconnection of the plant is expected to take place during the first quarter of 2014. Once completed the project, called "San Andrés" and located in the Atacama region, is set to become the largest solar photovoltaic merchant plant in Latin America in 2014 and one of the largest in the world. [November 2013]
The Export-Import Bank of the United States has approved a $61.1 million direct loan to Inversiones Eolicas de Orosi Dos S.A., a subsidiary of the leading Central American wind-generation company Globeleq Mesoamerica Energy, for the purchase of wind-turbine generators manufactured by Gamesa in Fairless Hills, Pa. The authorization, which represents Ex-Im Bank's first wind transaction in Costa Rica and fourth utility-scale wind project overall, will support approximately 200 U.S. jobs, according to bank estimates derived from Departments of Commerce and Labor data and methodology. [November 2013]
The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), in partnership with Ashden, a United Kingdom-based energy charity, announced a new award for innovators who use or supply clean energy technologies to increase production in the agricultural sector. The contest is open for entries until November 5, 2013. The winner will receive an award of up to £40,000 (approximately $64,000) at a ceremony in London on May 22, 2014. [October 2013]
USTDA announced a $287,917 grant to the Electricity Regulatory Authority of Vietnam, part of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, in order to support the development of a wind grid code for the country's electric power sector. The technical assistance grant will fund a study of Vietnam's wind resources and its power grid to serve as the basis for a new grid code standard that allows for the integration and interconnection of up to 6,000 MW of new wind power. Registration of wind power development projects in Vietnam has recently accelerated, with over 60 projects registered with MOIT, and more to come. [September 2013]
As part of its renewable-energy push, the Export-Import Bank of the United States has authorized a pair of direct loans totaling $33.6 million to Abengoa of Seville, Spain, that will facilitate the export of American heat-transfer fluid produced by The Dow Chemical Company for use in solar projects in Spain and South Africa. Ex-Im Bank's financing will support approximately 200 U.S. jobs, according to bank estimates derived from Departments of Commerce and Labor data and methodology. [September 2013]