The DOE has granted nearly $6.5bn to states and communities across the US for energy efficiency programs under the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grants (EECBG), State Energy Program (SEP), and Retrofit Ramp-Up Initiative, as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

The DOE has developed the ARRA SEP and EECBG Technical Assistance Program to provide financial and technical assistance to state and local officials for designing energy efficiency policies and programs and to help eligible grantees develop and commission clean energy projects to meet the conditions and guidelines of the federal grant programs.

In its capacity as a technical assistance provider, NEEA will arrange resources for the recipients of grants by coordinating with Northwest utilities and other energy efficiency providers, who will help them develop new programs and long-term energy policies, address environmental issues and create jobs.

NEEA will also work on the development and sharing of practices, tools and resources from across the nation.

The other organizations partnering with NEEA on this project are Vermont Energy, American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, Natural Resources Defense Council, Southwest Energy Efficiency Project, Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships and Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance.

Claire Fulenwider, executive director of NEEA, said: “Working with ARRA grant recipients is an effective way for NEEA to advance its mission by increasing market adoption of energy efficient products, services and business practices in the Northwest.

“A top strategic goal of our 2010-2014 business plan is to facilitate the regional planning and implementation of energy efficiency initiatives in our region.”