Biden-Harris Administration Allocates $72 Million for Home Electrification in Indian Country

The Largest Investment in Climate for Tribal Communities

The Biden administration has allocated $72 million from the Investing in America agenda to assist Tribal communities in electrifying homes. This funding, part of the Inflation Reduction Act, represents the largest-ever investment in climate and aims to electrify all US homes with clean energy sources by 2035.

Empowering Tribal Communities through Electrification

The Office of Indian Affairs’ Tribal Electrification Program is set to provide financial and technical support to 21 Tribes. This assistance will enable the connection of homes to clean energy-powered transmission and distribution, provide electricity to unelectrified Tribal homes through zero-emissions energy systems, transition electrified homes to zero-emissions energy systems, and facilitate home repairs and retrofitting for the installation of these systems. Moreover, the program will create opportunities for clean energy workforce development in Indian Country.

Support for clean energy Initiatives

During a visit to the Hopi Tribe in Arizona, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland emphasized the importance of providing reliable and affordable electricity to all homes. The program, funded through President Biden’s agenda, will aid Tribal communities in developing their electricity infrastructure and achieving clean energy goals.

Addressing Historical Disparities

Historical data reveals that Native American reservations have faced challenges in accessing electricity. A report from the Energy Information Administration in 2000 highlighted that 14% of households on these reservations lacked electricity. The Department of Energy’s 2022 report further indicated that 16,805 Tribal homes remained unelectrified, with a concentration in the Southwest and Alaska regions.

Advancing the Justice40 Initiative

The Tribal Electrification Program aligns with the Biden-Harris administration’s Justice40 Initiative, emphasizing that 40% of federal investment benefits should flow to marginalized communities, including federally recognized Tribal Nations. This initiative aims to address underinvestment and pollution burdens faced by these communities.

Grant Recipients in 2024

Tribe or Tribal Organization Location
Kootznoowoo, Incorporated
Chickaloon Native Village
Hopi Utilities Corporation
Navajo Tribal Utility Authority Arizona, New Mexico and Utah
Cachil Dehe Band of Wintun Indians, Colusa Rancheria
Santa Rosa Band of Cahuilla Indians
Guidiville Rancheria of California
Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation
Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska
Bois Forte Band of Chippewa
Prairie Island Indian Community
Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians
Eastern Shoshone Housing Authority

A second round of funding is anticipated in the spring of 2024.

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Read More of this Story at – 2024-03-05 18:14:00

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