Energy Act Authorizes Next Generation Lighting Initiative

August 31, 2005

In August 2005, President Bush signed the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPACT 2005), the first national energy plan in more than a decade.  Title IX (Research and Development) of the Energy Act directs the Secretary of Energy to carry out a Next Generation Lighting Initiative (NGLI) to support research, development, demonstration, and commercial application activities for solid-state lighting (SSL).

Specific directives related to SSL include competitive selection of an Industry Alliance that represents U.S. SSL research, development, infrastructure, and manufacturing expertise.  DOE is directed to solicit Alliance assistance in identifying SSL technology needs, assessing the progress of the Initiative’s research activities, and updating SSL technology roadmaps. 

The Secretary is also directed to carry out research, development, demonstration, and commercial application activities through competitively selected awards.  The Energy Act authorizes $50 million to the NGLI for each fiscal year 2007 through 2009, with extended authorization to allocate $50 million for each of the fiscal years 2010 to 2013.  The actual Congressional appropriation for the NGLI will not be determined until fiscal year 2007.

Many of the Energy Act provisions related to SSL – such as competitive selection of an Industry Alliance, competitively selected awards for SSL activities, and intellectual property provisions – have already been instilled in DOE’s SSL Portfolio Plan.  For more information on DOE’s SSL Core Technology Research, Product Development, Commercialization Support, and SSL Partnership activities, see the SSL Portfolio Plan  section of this site.

For more information on EPACT 2005, the full 1,724-page Energy Act (also referred to “conference report”) is available as a Featured Item on the Senate Committee on Energy and National Resources website.  Section 912 includes the provisions related to the NGLI.  The Senate website also features an 8-page summary by fuel and a 17-page summary by title.  See the Senate Committee Web site.