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DOE Announces $115 Million to Small Businesses for Clean Energy R&D Projects

Funding Supports Small Businesses Working on Climate Change Solutions

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In support of the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to build the American economy back better, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) today announced $115 million for small businesses pursuing clean energy research and development (R&D) projects. The projects range from grid modernization and carbon removal to renewable energy and energy storage.  

“Through this program, DOE can support small businesses with seed money they desperately need to develop and deploy cutting-edge clean energy solutions that will help America fight climate change and create jobs,” said Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm. “Importantly, by investing directly in small businesses, including diverse entrepreneurs, we can foster the creative ideas that will transform our nation’s energy sector, address the climate crisis, and build an equitable clean energy economy.”

Small businesses are the backbones of our communities and neighborhoods, making up 99% of all firms in the U.S. and creating two out of every three new jobs in the private sector.

This funding is administered by DOE’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs, which were established to encourage participation of diverse communities in technological innovation, as well as to increase technology transfer between research institutions and small businesses.

Under this funding opportunity, eligible small businesses can apply for supplemental funds for research experiences for undergraduate and graduate entrepreneurs from underrepresented groups, including women and socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.

“The SBIR program is one of the most important tools the federal government has in its arsenal to invest in and empower our small businesses, allowing them to engage in exciting, cutting-edge research and development that keeps America at the forefront of innovation and meets the critical needs of our nation,” said Senator Jeanne Shaheen. “I’m thrilled that the Department of Energy has announced this significant investment to American small businesses pursuing clean energy research and development projects that will help combat the existential threat of climate change and protect our environment, while reducing energy costs and creating jobs. I have long supported the SBIR program and will continue to fight to permanently reauthorize and increase funding for this catalyst of economic growth, innovation and technological and scientific advancement.”

The SBIR and STTR programs fund a diverse portfolio of startups and small businesses across technology areas and markets to stimulate technological breakthroughs, meet Federal research and development (R&D) needs, and increase commercialization to transition R&D into impact.

Previous SBIR and STTR awardees have developed technologies to aid in saltwater desalination, energy-efficient building design, and cloud connectivity for electric vehicles.

This funding opportunity is open to small businesses that have previously received SBIR or STTR grants to provide additional opportunities to compete for funding to develop working prototypes of their discoveries.

More details on this funding opportunity can be found HERE.

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