Gov. John Bel Edwards announced a $500 million program to establish energy hubs for communities during times of natural disasters.
The Hubs for Resilient Energy Operations initiative, which Edwards announced in a press release this afternoon, is funded by a Bipartisan Infrastructure Law grant from the U.S. Department of Energy and state partners, each contributing $250 million.
The program will be managed by the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources and create resilience hubs powered by clean energy like solar panels that will be placed within communities likely to be affected by natural disasters. The goal is to maintain access to electricity and other vital services in the most vulnerable areas during crisis situations, according to the announcement.
Each hub will be located on a critical facility or at a community-identified shelter and will consist of a clean energy source, long-duration energy storage and grid technologies to improve emergency response operations.
According to Edwards’ press release, HERO will help solidify Louisiana’s position as a leader in the global energy transition. The HERO initiative will also advance the goals of the State of Louisiana Interagency Work Group, established in 2022 to strategize efforts to increase energy resilience and build sustainable grid infrastructure.