RUS Electric Program
NOTICE OF PROPOSED RULEMAKING for the new Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program
The Rural Utilities Service – Electric Program published the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program proposed rule on July 26, 2012. This proposed rule implements Section 6101 of the Farm Bill. Section 6101 enhances RUS’ authority for the Electric Program to make loans for energy efficiency. This proposed rule supports President Obama’s Recovery through Retrofit Initiative (RTR). RTR requires Federal Agencies to complete activities that increase green job opportunities and boost energy savings by retrofitting homes for energy efficiency.
What are the eligible activities and investments?
The proposed rule will allow RUS to finance:
• All energy efficiency measures on a consumer premises
• Distributed generation for on or off grid renewable energy systems
• Demand side management investments
• Energy audits
• Consumer education and outreach programs
• Power factor correction equipment on the consumer side of the meter
• Re-lamping to more energy efficient lighting
• Other energy efficiency program investments approved by RUS Residential and commercial energy audits
• Community awareness and outreach programs
For more information on the Proposed Rule Making, you may download the following information here:
ABOUT THE ELECTRIC PROGRAM
Providing reliable, affordable electricity is essential to the economic well-being and quality of life for all of the nation's rural residents. The Electric Programs provide leadership and capital to upgrade, expand, maintain, and replace America's vast rural electric infrastructure. Under the authority of the Rural Electrification Act of 1936, the Electric Programs make direct loans and loan guarantees to electric utilities to serve customers in rural areas.
The loans and loan guarantees finance the construction of electric distribution, transmission, and generation facilities, including system improvements and replacement required to furnish and improve electric service in rural areas, as well as demand side management, energy conservation programs, and on-grid and off-grid renewable energy systems. Loans are made to corporations, states, territories and subdivisions and agencies such as municipalities, people's utility districts, and cooperative, nonprofit, limited-dividend, or mutual associations that provide retail electric service needs to rural areas or supply the power needs of distribution borrowers in rural areas.
Through the Electric Programs, the Federal government is the majority noteholder for approximately 700 electric systems borrowers in 46 states.
The Electric Programs also provide financial assistance to rural communities with extremely high energy costs to acquire, construct, extend, upgrade, and otherwise improve energy generation, transmission, or distribution facilities.