U.S. Sec. of Energy announces $3M in funding for HBCUs

Published: Feb. 17, 2022 at 7:27 AM EST|Updated: Feb. 17, 2022 at 4:22 PM EST
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ORANGEBURG, S.C. (WCSC) - The Department of Energy has announced they’re giving out $3 million to Historically Black Colleges and Universities across the country Thursday as part of the president’s massive infrastructure spending bill.

Energy secretary Jennifer Granholm and congressman James Clyburn made the announcement at South Carolina State University.

“We want people to see the benefits of the votes that were cast for them and for their communities and we also want to let people know that the next step, the build back better agenda, is also really important for communities across the country,” Granholm said.

The pair toured the nation’s only Historically Black College with a nuclear engineering program at South Carolina State University and announced there’s $3 million up for grabs for HBCUs across the country, courtesy of that new infrastructure law.

South Carolina is reliant on Nuclear energy, which makes up about 55 percent of our energy profile. Secretary Granholm says nuclear is a carbon free energy and will play a major role in the president’s goal of having 100 percent clean energy by 2035.

To do that, Granholm says we need places like SC State to develop a skilled workforce.

“We need to make sure we have got a workforce of scientists and engineers that look like America,” Granholm said. “We need to expand the diversity of our talent pool as we will not be able to achieve our goals if we are missing chunks of society.”

Sec. Granholm tours Clemson’s Dominion Energy Innovation Center

Granholm began her visit to the Palmetto State by touring the wind turbine testing facility at Clemson’s Dominion Energy Innovation Center.

She says her visit is a way to highlight the impact President Biden’s $1 trillion infrastructure package will have on clean energy technology.

Granholm and Rep. Clyburn spoke with Clemson students, faculty and others who are involved in the projects at the facility.

According to Granholm, President Biden has a goal of getting 100% clean electricity by 2035. She says Thursday’s trip to North Charleston illustrates the potential for clean energy in South Carolina. The offshore wind industry.

“The next step of the President’s agenda, that Build Back Better agenda which provides tax credits for clean energy, also provides tax credits for wind energy, specifically offshore wind,” Granholm said. “There’s a real opportunity here for South Carolina to be a leader in the South, along the Atlantic Coast, in this technology, which by the way will bring thousands of good-paying jobs for people.”

According to Granholm, South Carolina is ranked 2nd on the Atlantic for the capability of offshore wind. She says the location of Clemson’s Energy Innovation Center in North Charleston means it wouldn’t just be available for South Carolina’s wind energy but the entire Atlantic coast and would be a major part in creating an economic cluster involved in all parts of wind energy from testing to building the parts and beyond.

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