$475m in US govt funding for clean energy projects on former mine land

25th March 2024 By: Creamer Media Reporter

$475m in US govt funding for clean energy projects on former mine land

US US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm

The US Department of Energy (DoE) has announced up to $475-million in funding for five projects in Arizona, Kentucky, Nevada, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia to accelerate clean energy deployment on current and former mine land.

The funding, made possible by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, will support a variety of diverse, locally-driven clean energy projects that can be replicated in current and former mining communities across the country.

“President Biden believes that the communities that have powered our nation for the past 100 years should power our nation for the next 100 years,” US Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm said last week, announcing the funding.

“Thanks to the President’s Investing in America agenda, DoE is helping deploy clean energy solutions on current and former mine land across the country—supporting jobs and economic development in the areas hit hardest by our evolving energy landscape.” 

The selected projects cover a range of clean energy technologies, from solar, microgrids, and pumped storage hydropower to geothermal and battery energy storage systems (BESS).

Three projects are on former Appalachian coal mines, which supports economic revitalisation and workforce development on land that is no longer viable for industrial purposes.

In the West, two projects seek to displace fossil-fuel use by ramping up net-zero mining operations and providing the critical materials needed for a robust, domestic, clean energy supply chain.

The five projects selected for award negotiation include:

The DoE argues that developing clean energy projects on mine land provides an attractive economic alternative to using undisturbed natural and agricultural land. Mine land is often located near critical infrastructure that makes it suitable for clean energy development, including electric substations, transmission lines, and access to roads or railroad lines.

The department notes that projects ultimately selected for award have the potential to be replicated and scaled on the millions of acres of current and former US mine land.