California receives cash for energy programs

June 25, 2009 12:43:21 PM PDT
U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced today that California will receive more than $90 million in federal stimulus funds to support energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in the state.

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The announcement comes on the same day that Chu is scheduled to speak at the close of the annual convention of the Edison Electric Institute, an electric power industry group, in San Francisco.

California will receive $90.4 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act money, which will go toward providing a statewide energy efficiency retrofit program and cost-effective clean energy systems for residential, commercial and industrial buildings.

California is one of four states, along with Missouri, New Hampshire and North Carolina, that received a total of more than $154 million for state energy programs today.

"This funding will provide an important boost for state economies, help to put Americans back to work, and move us toward energy independence," Chu said in a statement.

"It reflects our commitment to support innovative state and local strategies to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy while insisting that taxpayer dollars be spent responsibly," he said.

Chu will be speaking at 3:30 p.m. today, the last day of the Edison Electric Institute's convention at the Marriott Hotel in San Francisco. His speech is titled "Energy: The Challenge and the Opportunity."

Chu was formerly the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory Director before being chosen to serve as Secretary of Energy. He earned his doctorate from the University of California at Berkeley, and has taught at both UC Berkeley and Stanford University.

He was awarded the Nobel Prize in physics with Claude Cohen-Tannoudji and William D. Phillips for developing methods to cool and trap atoms with laser light.

Chu was instrumental in bringing to the Bay Area the Joint BioEnergy Institute, a $135 million bio-energy research center funded by the Department of Energy and operated by a multi-institutional partnership under the leadership of Berkeley Lab.

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