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U.S. Economic Development Administration Invests $324,000 to Support Job Creation and Environmentally-Sustainable Manufacturing in Alaska


WASHINGTON — The U.S. Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) today announced a $324,000 grant to the Gulkana Village Council in Gakona, Alaska, to provide manufacturing equipment that will increase the capacity of a Gakona compressed wood pellet plant. According to grantee estimates, the project will help create 40 new jobs and contribute to environmentally-sustainable development for the region.

“Sometimes seemingly small things – like a piece of equipment – can make a huge difference for communities looking to catalyze real growth,” said U.S. Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Jay Williams. “The EDA grant announced today will provide equipment that will help increase the capacity of a critical compressed wood pellet plant, creating new, environmentally-sustainable jobs for the people of the Copper River Region.”

EDA’s investment will provide for the purchase and installation of a compressed biomass brick press for a compressed wood pellet plant in Gakona. This equipment will help the plant increase its capacity, including reopening a currently idle facility. Moreover, the products that will be manufactured by the plant will meet a crucial need for energy-efficient fuel using an abundantly available natural resource and improve opportunities for economic growth for the region.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.