DOE portal speeds up loan process for clean-energy technologies
Tool will help accelerate loan guarantee applications for innovative projects
- By Rutrell Yasin
- Aug 18, 2010
The Energy Department has launched an online portal designed to reduce the time it takes for companies developing innovative technology for clean-energy projects to apply for loan guarantees.
Rather than submitting hundreds of pages of printed materials, applicants can now quickly upload documents online in a standard format and receive instantaneous feedback, according to officials in DOE’s Loan Program office.
The online portal will also provide streamlined, standardized department responses and will enable department staff to process applications more quickly than in the past.
“The new online portal is a significant improvement from the previous process,” said Jonathan Silver, DOE’s Loan Programs executive director.
“Not only does this new tool make the loan guarantee solicitation process easier to navigate, the portal also demonstrates our commitment to continuously accelerate important clean-energy investments that create jobs, support private markets and transform the way we use and produce energy,” Silver said.
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The Energy Policy Act of 2005 authorizes DOE to issue loan guarantees to eligible projects that "avoid, reduce, or sequester air pollutants or anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases,” and then deploy new or significantly improved technologies as compared to technologies in service at the time the guarantee is issued.
The new online portal is based on extensive feedback from industry professionals and stakeholders.
According to DOE, the system is designed to guide applicants through the application process by making suggestions as to applicable solicitations based on the information provided by the applicant. Applicants will receive instantaneous guidance as to how they might increase the likelihood that their applications will continue to the next phase. The portal offers comprehensive security features such as encryption algorithms and password protection to ensure that only the applicant and identified DOE reviewers can access the files.
While all applicants for loan guarantees will be encouraged to apply by using the new portal, applicants to any previously issued open solicitations can still apply for loan guarantees via Express Mail, DOE officials said. Applicants who have already submitted Part I applications and are invited to submit Part II applications should also do so by sending their application via Express Mail.
Interested parties can find the latest solicitations and apply for a loan guarantee via the new online application portal. In addition, parties that plan to make a submission during the current application round that ends on Aug. 24, 2010, are encouraged to apply through this online portal.
Rutrell Yasin is is a freelance technology writer for GCN.