WASHINGTON The Energy Department, under growing pressure to begin spending economic stimulus funds, said Friday (Feb. 27) it is seeking industry comment on its wind energy initiative.
DoE's request for information seeks public input on its "20% Wind Energy by 2030" program. The initiative was launched in May 2008. The goal is to generate more than 300 gigawatts of electicity in the U.S. via wind power by 2030.
The agency has so far held two workshops to discuss ways of expanding the U.S. wind power manufacturing sector, which is currently dominated by mostly European suppliers, and potential R&D efforts.
DoE said it "invites comments and suggestions on all key topics, findings, themes and suggestions found in the proceedings of the subject workshops. Input is especially encouraged on possible analytical and R&D pathways which could contribute to the achievement of the '20% Wind by 2030' scenario."
Program officials noted that the request "does not constitute a request for specific project proposals" but rather is intended "to assist DoE in further assessing barriers" to reaching the 20 percent goal.
Public comments are due by March 27, DoE said.
The Energy Department has been criticized in recent days for failing to spend funds appropriated by Congress for an electric vehicle research project. Lawmakers have complained that none of the funds from a $25 billion loan program established in 2007 have been allocated at a time when U.S. auto companies are seeking government bailouts.