The Biden administration on Thursday announced $250 million in funding through the Assisting Federal Facilities with Energy Conservation Technologies (AFFECT) program aimed at helping federal agencies to implement and advance net zero building projects.
The new funding announcement follows an executive order signed by President Biden in December 2021, outlining a series of goals and initiatives for the U.S. federal government to achieve net zero emissions by 2050. Among the key goals outlined in the order were targets for the government to achieve a net zero building portfolio by 2045, with an interim goal of a 50% emissions reduction by 2032.
Buildings are a key source of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and also one of the hardest to replace, given their long-term nature. The U.S. federal government’s portfolio spans 300,000 buildings.
U.S. Secretary of Energy Jennifer M. Granholm said:
“Collectively U.S. Government agencies are the nation’s largest energy consumer, and they will play a major role in the U.S. meeting President Biden’s ambitious climate and clean energy goals. By leveraging the significant investments in President Biden’s Investing in America agenda, the Federal Government will lead by example, showing that everyone from homeowners to huge factories can conserve energy, switch to cleaner sources, and save taxpayers money.”
The new funding will be provided through the Assisting Federal Facilities with Energy Conservation Technologies (AFFECT) program, managed by DOE’s Federal Energy Management Program. AFFECT will provide funding for federal agencies for projects including energy and water efficiency upgrades to new and existing federal buildings, as well as for initiatives such as efficiency and conservation improvements, electrification, on-site clean energy generation, and sustainable design.
Funding for the program will be allocated from the Biden administration’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
White House Council on Environmental Quality Chair Brenda Mallory, said:
“President Biden’s Investing in America agenda is helping transform the Federal Government’s 300,000 buildings to be more energy efficient and climate resilient. This investment will help achieve the President’s ambitious Federal sustainability goals while creating good-paying jobs, lowering energy costs, and building healthier communities.”