|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 2, 2010
Michael Chapnick | (703) 875-4357
NEW USTDA CLEAN ENERGY INITIATIVE FOR AFRICA WILL BOOST U.S. EXPORTS
WASHINGTON, D.C. – During the U.S. – Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum today, U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA) Director Leocadia I. Zak announced the Africa Clean Energy Solutions (ACES) Initiative, which will further the Agency’s commitment to assist in the development of clean and sustainable sources of energy. The projects supported under the initiative will develop clean energy and energy efficiency solutions to support the continent’s economic growth, as well as create job opportunities for workers in the United States.
In a discussion at the forum about deploying renewable energy and efficient technologies, Director Zak said that electricity users throughout Africa are looking to wean themselves from expensive and polluting diesel and coal power generation in favor of cleaner, more cost effective solutions to meet their power needs.
"U.S. companies are world leaders in providing both on-grid and off-grid clean energy solutions, and many are looking to the significant growth opportunities that Africa offers, both in terms of needs and availability of renewable energy resources," remarked Director Zak who is a member of President Obama's Export Promotion Cabinet.
"The ACES initiative reaffirms USTDA's commitment to combating climate change through the application of innovative technologies," she continued. "By supporting renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, USTDA's programs aim to address one of Africa's greatest economic challenges."
Following her announcement, Director Zak signed four grant agreements to provide more than $2.9 million in USTDA funding under the ACES Initiative to support clean energy projects in Nigeria, Angola, and Kenya.
"Together, these activities will advance key objectives of the Obama Administration by reducing carbon emissions, promoting investment in clean energy technologies, and creating U.S. jobs associated with the export of advanced clean energy solutions," Zak said. "Moreover, these grants will help each of the countries improve access to electricity in an environmentally friendly way."
The grant funding will promote smart-grid technology in Nigeria, provide capacity building for Kenya’s Geothermal Development Company, and improve electricity transmission and distribution in Angola.
The opportunity to conduct the USTDA-funded technical assistance and feasibility studies will be competed on the Federal Business Opportunities (FBO) website. A link to the FBO announcements will be posted to USTDA's website at www.ustda.gov. Interested U.S. firms should submit proposals according to the instructions in the FBO announcement. The USTDA grantees will select the U.S. contractors that will complete the technical assistance and feasibility studies.
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The U.S. Trade and Development Agency advances economic development and U.S. commercial interests in developing and middle-income countries. The agency funds technical assistance, feasibility studies, training, reverse trade missions and business workshops to support development of modern infrastructure and a fair and open trading environment. USTDA's efforts create an enabling environment for trade, investment and sustainable economic development.
U.S.-Sub-Saharan Africa Trade and Economic Cooperation Forum
Remarks by Leocadia I. Zak, Director, U.S. Trade and Development Agency
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