USD$7 million committed to encourage solar growth in Tennessee

The aim of the grants is to encourage growth in Tennessee’s emerging solar value chain. As part of Governor Phil Bredesen’s Volunteer State Solar Initiative, 21 Tennessee businesses were awarded funding. The money is expected to go towards increasing energy efficiency and incorporating renewable energy products in the workplace. Decreasing costs and increasing profitability will also be a focus.

It is said the funding will leverage more than USD$13 million in private investments, with a reported total cumulative benefit to the state’s economy in excess of USD$20 million.

“The grants awarded to businesses across the state represent a wide range of proposed activities, from process improvements to workforce development,” commented David Millhorn, executive vice president, University of Tennessee. “But the one thing they have in common is that they will help these solar firms be more productive, less energy intensive and more efficient in their processes.”

The TSI also announced that it will begin accepting grant applications for its next round of Solar Innovation Grants this week. An additional USD$7.25 million of grant funding is said to be available to solar industry firms under the second round of Innovation Grants.