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October 31, 2014
Graphic by <a href="/node/379579">Sarah Gerrity</a>, Energy Department.
Turn Your Halloween Pumpkins Into Power

It might not be long before the 1.1. billion pounds of pumpkins produced annually in the U.S. are as important for our energy security as they are for Halloween.

October 31, 2014
Cornstalks Aren't Just for Scarecrows Anymore

For years, farmers have been using cornstalks to make scarecrows, preventing crows and other predators from destroying their crops. This fall, the Energy Department’s Bioenergy Technologies Office is using cornstalks for a different purpose—bioenergy production.

October 30, 2014
Participants watch a weatherization demonstration in Vermont, including techniques for the proper installation of a blower door. | Photo Courtesy of Capstone Community Action in Vermont
Department of Energy Joins States to Celebrate National Weatherization Day

Since the Energy Department's Weatherization Assistance Program was created in 1976, low-income Americans in more than 7 million homes have received cost-saving energy efficiency improvements.

October 28, 2014
A team of vehicles experts was present during the crash test for Ford and Magna's Multimaterial Lightweight Vehicle.
Multi-Material Lightweight Vehicle Hurdles Into the Future

While crashing a car isn't usually considered a good thing, running through a crash test was a major milestone for Ford and Magna's Multimaterial Lightweight Vehicle. This unique concept car, supported by a project funded by the Energy Department's Vehicle Technologies Office, is 25 percent lighter than the 2013 Ford Fusion, a similar midsized sedan. As reducing a vehicle's weight by 10 percent can increase its fuel economy by 6 to 8 percent, the lightweight materials in this vehicle have the potential to save consumers fuel and money in the future.

October 28, 2014
EERE Leadership Discusses Energy Innovation in Midwest

Dr. David Danielson, our Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, recently sat down with a panel of clean energy experts for an extended interview on WTTW Channel 11 in Chicago to discuss clean energy and innovation in the Midwest.

October 28, 2014
Solar energy benefits homeowners, the job market, and the planet. | Photo courtesy of Dennis Schroeder, National Renewable Energy Lab
What Can Solar Do for You

Using solar energy at home can help you save money, protect the planet, increase property values, and create jobs.

October 27, 2014
5 Questions for an Expert: Bob Gemmer on Combined Heat and Power

Combined heat and power (CHP), also known as co-generation, provides both electricity and heat from a single source all while saving energy and slashing carbon pollution. CHP systems capture energy that is normally lost in centralized power generation and convert that energy to heat and cool manufacturing facilities and businesses. Unlike central power generation, CHP systems are distributed energy generation systems and that means that they are located close to where energy is consumed. The proximity of power generation to its use makes CHP a reliable source of power for hospitals, schools, office buildings, apartment complexes, and other large buildings that require around-the-clock electricity. Bob Gemmer of EERE’s Advanced Manufacturing Office is one of the Energy Department’s primary experts on CHP technologies with more than 40 years of related expertise. We sat down with Bob to learn more about him and what makes him such a passionate advocate for CHP.

October 27, 2014
The Energy Department's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) has announced upcoming funding for nine topics and 26 new subtopics under its Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, including those for concentrating solar power technologies. In addition, EERE launched a new all-in-one online tool to help small businesses find information needed to successfully complete the SBIR application. | Photo by Randy Montoya, Sandia National Laboratories
New SBIR All-in-One Web Tool Helps Small Businesses Navigate Nine Websites

To help small businesses save time, the Energy Department’s Office of Energy and Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) launched a new interactive all-in-one online tool that makes it easier to apply for EERE’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. SBIR/STTR provide funding to small businesses, with a focus on minority- and woman-owned small businesses, to develop and commercialize clean energy technologies that cut carbon pollution and drive the economy forward.

October 27, 2014
As part of an “all-of-the-above” approach, Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington will invest State Energy Program funds in the deployment of projects to enhance economic development opportunities associated with energy efficiency and renewable energy across the residential, commercial, and industrial markets.
State Energy Program awards $5 million to states for State Energy Planning and Innovative Energy Practices

The Energy Department announced last week approximately $5 million in State Energy Program (SEP) competitive awards for 13 states to achieve the economic and environmental benefits that clean energy offers. As part of an “all-of-the-above” approach, Alabama, Arkansas, Idaho, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington will invest SEP funds in the deployment of projects to enhance economic development opportunities associated with energy efficiency and renewable energy across the residential, commercial, and industrial markets.

October 22, 2014
New Study Reveals the Power of Solar Schools

A new study funded by the Energy Department’s SunShot Initiative, “Brighter Future: A Study on Solar in U.S. Schools," found that solar installations on U.S. public and private K-12 schools is increasing, providing renewable energy, cost savings, and other benefits for school systems across the country.