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V.I. Energy Blast for April

Deadline Approaching for Energy Grants

The deadline for Virgin Islands non-profit organizations to take advantage of funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) for alternative energy and energy efficiency projects is fast approaching. Those funds must be committed to projects by September. The projects don’t have to be started at that time, but the application process needs to be completed by then.
Approved projects will receive up to $50,000 in funding. Specific projects mentioned in the grant application include building retrofits, solar/wind systems, outdoor lighting, and energy education outreach. The program goals are energy savings and job creation. The Virgin Islands Energy Office (VIEO) began reviewing the first applications in March.
Joseph Daniel, energy operation coordinator and head of the Virgin Islands program, said recently, “Even if all the applications we have presently are approved, there is still money for many more projects. We encourage all non-profit groups in the territory to take advantage of these grants. There may never be another opportunity like this for organizations to slash their WAPA bills.”
The projects will be funded under the Energy Office’s Discretionary Grant Program, which in turn is utilizing funds available from the ARRA of 2009.
Interested non-profit organizations are reminded to initiate the process by obtaining a Duns number at www.dnb.com. Successful applicants will have to commit five percent in matching funds or an equivalent in-kind contribution to the project. For additional information, call Daniel at 774-3320, ext. 6108.
2010 Junior Solar Sprint Spread Over Two Islands
About 100 young students took part in the 15th annual Junior Solar Sprint competition held March 19 on St. Croix and March 26 on St. Thomas. Twenty-three schools across the three islands registered to participate in this Energy Office sponsored event. Each school is allowed to have up to three teams, and each team has two students. The two top teams finishing were from St. Thomas — Sts. Peter and Paul Catholic School and All Saints Cathedral School. Finishing in third place was Church of God School from St. Croix. To see a video from the races go to www.vienergy.org.
This year the finalists from St. Croix traveled to participate in the St. Thomas races at Tutu Mall. In recent years the races were held on St. Croix, but as the races grew, it became harder to transport all the students from St. Thomas to St. Croix. The competition is a hands-on, educational experience that was developed for junior high school students to improve their knowledge of science, engineering and renewable energy concepts by constructing solar model cars. The students design and build cars from kits supplied by the Energy Office, which is a division of the Office of the Governor.
Building Code Training Offered Free
VIEO invites all the architects, builders, contractors, engineers and interested members of the public to the “Tropical Building Energy Code Training” at no cost to the public to be held from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday, April 21, at Emerald Beach Resort and on April 23 at the Carambola Beach Resort.
Buildings account for 40 percent of global energy consumption exceeding those of all transportation combined. Large and attractive opportunities exist to reduce the buildings’ energy use. These reductions are fundamental to achieve the V.I. Government’s target of a 60 percent reduction in the territory’s fossil fuel consumption by 2025.
For additional information, call Miguel Quinones at 774-3320, ext. 6103.
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