WASHINGTON, D.C.—In support of President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, a key pillar of Bidenomics, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is now accepting applications for competitive funding to expand energy efficiency workforce training programs. Authorized by President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Career Skills Training program (CST) will provide up to $10 million in competitive grants for nonprofit partnerships between public or private industry and labor organizations to deliver programs that provide both energy efficiency classroom instruction and on-the-job training. The announcement comes during Climate Week 2023, in which more than a dozen Biden-Harris Administration officials are in New York City participating in a broad range of events highlighting Administration’s historic climate agenda.
To address the limited qualified green building workforce across the country, and to support the implementation of national energy efficiency improvements sparked by BIL and the Inflation Reduction Act, the largest climate investment in history, this program will ensure that our building performance professionals, energy auditors, and other energy efficiency workers will be ready for our country’s upgrade to a more sustainable future. Program participants will obtain industry-related certifications to install energy efficient building technologies.
“President Biden’s historic investments are accelerating the clean energy transition, creating hundreds of thousands of good-paying jobs, while turbo-boosting our clean energy economy,” said U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm. “Today’s investment expands career training and retention programs that will equip the workforce with the necessary skills to deliver on the President’s climate goals and help us achieve our equitable clean energy transition.”
CST is part of a concerted effort at DOE to invest in a clean energy workforce that can implement the $8.8 billion Home Energy Rebate Programs other energy efficiency programs that will help homeowners, state and local governments, and businesses save money and fight climate change. In order to implement these energy efficiency upgrades, the buildings and clean energy workforce needs to be supported, trained, and ready to deploy. Similar programs such as the State-Based Home Energy Efficiency Contractor Training Grants and related Workforce Development and Business Owner Training Programs will prepare workers and businesses to deliver the energy efficiency and electrification projects that will decarbonize buildings.
Today’s Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) provides application instructions and program guidance. Applicants need to submit a Community Benefits Plan along with their application, detailing how their proposal will support local community and labor; invest in the workforce; advance diversity, equity, and inclusion; and aid economic and environmental justice initiatives. Applicants can sign up for regular updates, including a webinar on October 3, 2023, that will provide insights into the FOA and application process. Visit the Career Skills Training program webpage to sign up for updates and register for an informational webinar scheduled on October 3, 2023. The applications deadline is November 27, 2023, at 5 p.m. ET.
The U.S. Department of Energy Office of State and Community Energy Programs is overseeing the administration of these programs while ensuring that institutions of higher education, industry leaders, and states are prepared to deliver the energy efficiency projects needed to decarbonize buildings. This program aligns with President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative, ensuring that 40% percent of the overall benefits of clean energy investments make a difference in communities that are energy burdened and historically underserved. For more information, visit the Career Skills Training program webpage.