Penn State's PennTAP receives $2.3 million Emerging Energy grant

University Park, Pa. -- Pennsylvania companies hit hard by the economic downturn also contend with rising and unpredictable energy costs, often passing those costs to the consumer. A new $2.3 million grant awarded to Penn State's Pennsylvania Technical Assistance Program (PennTAP) will help fund a program to assist businesses throughout the state to improve energy efficiency and adopt emerging energy technologies. The program aims to save those companies money, protect the environment and drive the creation of alternative energy products.

Providing services to increase energy efficiency is not a new idea to PennTAP, which has been providing free or low-cost objective technical and workforce solutions to companies since its inception in 1965. PennTAP guides business owners to make smart decisions with a broad range of energy-efficiency and alternative energy solutions available to them. The unit also helps businesses identify sources for financing energy-improvement projects -- from energy audits to insulation improvements to heating system retro-fits.

"We’ve helped an increasing number of businesses find sustainable alternative-energy solutions," said Wayne Figurelle, director of PennTAP. "This Emerging Energy initiative is driven based on the demand that we’ve seen."

Figurelle anticipates that the grant will allow PennTAP to provide 200 cases of technology assistance, with $10 million in economic impact. PennTAP also will connect companies to solution providers, offering unbiased review of proposals from those providers.

PennTAP’s project will develop a database to inventory services solutions, such as solar, hydroelectric and geothermal. In addition, it will provide new product development services, such as assistance with product improvement, supply chains and patents, among others, for small businesses and entrepreneurs in regions that are underserved.

The grant comes from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development and the Economic Development Administration, part of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

For more information on the services provided by PennTAP, call 814-865-0427. 

The Pennsylvania Technical Assistance Program (PennTAP) engages, guides and empowers businesses and organizations throughout the Commonwealth and beyond by providing objective and experience-based technical and workforce solutions that enable clients to succeed and thrive, stimulating economic growth for Pennsylvania. Recently, PennTAP reported more than 600 jobs created or retained and $23 million in economic benefits as a result of help in 2008. For more information, visit http://www.penntap.psu.edu/. PennTAP is part of Penn State Outreach, the largest unified outreach organization in American higher education.

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Last Updated November 24, 2009