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The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and NETL have announced today investments for the Coal FIRST (Flexible, Innovative, Resilient, Small, and Transformative) initiative, which aims to develop coal plants of the future that will provide secure, stable, reliable power with near zero emissions.  “Coal is an abundant, affordable, resilient, and reliable energy source that, through innovation, will continue to be an important part of the U.S. portfolio for decades to come,” said Under Secretary of Energy Mark W. Menezes. “The Department’s Coal FIRST initiative is helping the Nation secure its domestic power supply by developing plants that are not only more reliable, resilient, efficient, and near zero emissions, but that can adapt to the changing electrical grid.” Under the Coal FIRST initiative, DOE is supporting research and development (R&D) projects that will help develop plants that:
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Today, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and NETL have announced up to $87.3 million in federal funding for cost-shared research and development (R&D) projects for advanced coal technologies and research. DOE Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Steven Winberg announced this R&D funding at the Annual Project Review Meeting for Crosscutting, Rare Earth Elements, Gasification, and Transformative Power Generation at the National Energy Technology Laboratory. “Coal-fueled power plants are a significant source of electrical power generation in the United States. The goal with these projects is to ensure that the United States can have a fleet of coal-fired power plants that provides stable power generation with operational flexibility, high efficiency, low emissions, and lower costs for consumers,” said Assistant Secretary for Fossil Energy Steven Winberg. “By investing in this R&D, we will enable the United States to continue maximizing its domestic energy resources while protecting our supply of reliable and affordable electricity.” In 2017, coal was the second-largest energy source for electricity generation in the United States. 
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The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy (FE) and NETL have announced up to $9.5 million in federal funding for cost-shared research and development (R&D) under the funding opportunity announcement (FOA) DE-FOA-0001992, Maximizing the Coal Value Chain. This FOA seeks to develop innovative uses of domestic coal for upgraded coal-based feedstocks used to produce power, make steel, and make high-value products—ultimately creating new market opportunities for coal. These projects will support FE’s Advanced Energy System Program, and the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL) will manage them. This FOA focuses on three areas of interest (AOI): 1. Improved Domestic U.S. Coal Feedstocks for Power Production and Steel-Making – Projects under this AOI will test technologies that can produce an upgraded coal fuel from run-of-mine domestic coal to increase the value of coal as a power plant fuel or for steel production for domestic and international markets. There are two subtopics: