Energy Department Solicits Comments on Defense Production Act Authority for Clean Energy

November 03, 2022

The U.S. Department of Energy (“DOE”) set a November 30 deadline for parties to respond to a request for information regarding the DOE’s implementation of the Defense Production Act (“DPA”), which was authorized by Presidential Proclamation. The DOE seeks comments on how it should leverage DPA programs to accelerate domestic manufacturing and deployment of the following key energy technologies:

  • Transformers and electric grid components;
  • Solar photovoltaics;
  • Insulation materials; and
  • Electrolyzers, platinum group metals, and fuel cells for clean hydrogen.

The potential programs include purchases, purchase commitments of raw materials and final products, financial assistance to reduce operating costs, and financial assistance with capital expenditures.  DOE is specifically interested in gathering information on how to use DPA authority, relevant to the following topic areas:

  1. Technology Supply Chain Challenges and Opportunities: includes requests for information identifying the most urgent needs, greatest barriers to U.S. manufacturing and deployment, what DPA tools can be used, how to use DPA to secure foreign direct investment, and what standards should be developed for DPA funding.
  2. Domestic Manufacturing, Including Small and Medium-Sized Scale: includes requests for information identifying specific projects and project types, setting funding selection criteria, barriers to SME manufacturers that can be addressed using DPA, and what barriers have SMEs previously faced in accessing federal support.
  3. American Workforce Investment: includes requests for information including what market certainty is needed for workforce expansion and training, whether DPA can be used to support workforce training, and development of selection criteria for DPA actions.
  4. Energy Equity, Community Access, and Economic Benefit: includes requests for information including how to use DPA to create broad regional economic benefits, reuse or leverage existing industrial infrastructure, creation and support of regional clusters for clean energy manufacturing, especially in underserved communities, securing the national supply chain, and developing selection criteria with equity standards.

Responses to the request for information may be submitted to by November 30, 2022. Comments are not posted publicly but will be subject to review upon request. Interested parties can find more information at the DOE’s website.

Cassidy Levy Kent continues to monitor developments in this area and is prepared to advise parties on this process as needed.