Businesses in the clean-energy sector have a new oppor- tunity with the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory through the DOE Small Business Vouchers Pilot (SBV). Following the successes of the SBV Pilot’s first two
rounds of funding over 76 small businesses from 25 states, awarding nearly $15 million in vouchers, the third and fourth rounds
will award businesses that are willing to collaborate with the DOE
Small businesses are strongly encouraged to submit requests for
assistance to the DOE. Individual vouchers range from $50,000-
$300,000 per small business and may be used to conduct collaborative research or access lab instrumentation or facilities. Companies
selected must also provide a 20%, in-kind cost share for completing
“The business voucher program helps small businesses access the
world-renowned expertise and instrumentation at ORNL and other
DOE labs,” says Moe Khaleel, Associate Laboratory Director for
Energy and Environmental Sciences at ORNL. “Companies can take
advantage of high-tech resources that they may not have realized
were available, whether it is collaborating with our researchers or
Businesses interested in SBV funding must be based and owned
in the U.S. and consist of no more than 500 full-time employees
worldwide. A total of $12 million is available for vouchers in rounds
three and four. Round three is closed, but the impending round four
is set for a deadline in the 2017 fiscal year.
Montreal Protocol Phases
THE AMENDMENT TARGETS HARMFUL CHEMICALS
COMMONLY USED IN AIR CONDITIONING AND
Apply for Small Business
Acommon type of chemical used in air conditioning and refrigerants will be phased out in the next two years, as the United States and nearly 200 nations have agreed to amend the Montreal Protocol. The amend- ment gradually eliminates the production and use of
heat-trapping chemicals known as hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs).
The phase-down schedule begins in 2019 for developed countries. Eliminating the use of hydrofluorocarbons will cut 80 billion
metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by 2050, avoiding warming of up to 32. 9 degrees F. by the end of the century.
“From the climate agreement forged in Paris to this new accord
reached in Rwanda, the international community is continuing a
year of positive action to cut the heat-trapping emissions that are
warming our planet," says U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz.
“These agreements will send signals to industry and innovators that
countries are committed to developing and deploying a new gen-
HFCs are potent greenhouse gases that are exponentially more
harmful to the environment than carbon dioxide. They make up a
small fraction of the total of all greenhouse gases, but their emis-
sions are estimated to increase twentyfold in the decades to come.