Infrastructure Bill Includes New Training Grants from Department of Energy

Taylor Henry

On November 15, President Biden signed into law a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The bill, also known as the “bipartisan infrastructure deal” includes $550 billion in new federal spending over the next five years on infrastructure-related programs including roads and bridges, public transit, ports and airports, as well as broadband, energy, and water infrastructure. 

Of the many meaningful investments the bill makes in the energy industry, it also invests in several Department of Energy training grant programs. These programs represent important steps to invest in the people who will build and maintain these new and expanded projects. 

Energy efficiency revolving loan fund capitalization grant program

This section creates a revolving loan fund capitalization grant program within the State Energy Program for recipients to conduct commercial energy audits, residential energy audits, or energy upgrades or retrofits. This section authorizes $250,000,000 for FY22.

Energy auditor training grant program

This section establishes a competitive grant program under which the Secretary shall award grants to eligible States to train individuals to conduct energy audits or surveys of commercial and residential buildings. This section authorizes $40,000,000 for the period of FY22-26.

Building, training, and assessment centers. 

This section provides grants to institutions of higher education to establish building training and assessment centers to educate and train building technicians and engineers on implementing modern building technologies, This section authorizes $10,000,000 for FY22. 

Career skills training. 

This section directs the Secretary to award grants to pay the Federal share of associated career skill training programs under which students concurrently receive classroom instruction and on-the-job training for the purpose of obtaining an industry related certification to install energy efficient buildings technologies. This section authorizes $10,000,000 for FY22.

Future of industry program and industrial research and assessment centers.

This section provides funding for institutions of higher education-based industrial research and assessment centers to identify opportunities for optimizing energy efficiency and environmental performance at manufacturing and other industrial facilities. This section also establishes a grant program to fund upgrades for small- and medium-sized manufacturers that have been recommended in an assessment from an IAC or CHP TAP, This section authorizes $550,000,000 for the period of FY22-26.