BANGOR — USDA Rural Development State Director Virginia Manuel has announced that the Greater Portland Council of Governments has been selected to receive a $100,000 grant to support about 300 energy projects in rural communities.

The Greater Portland Council of Governments will use the money to establish a program to assist 150 agricultural producers and 150 rural small businesses with evaluating the potential to incorporate renewable energy technologies including solar, biomass, geothermal, wind, renewable biodiesel and other systems into their operations.

The goal of the project is to reduce and stabilize energy costs for agricultural producers and rural small businesses in Maine.

USDA Rural Development has offices in Presque Isle, Bangor, Lewiston and Scarborough, as well as a State Office in Bangor.

Further information on rural programs is available at a local USDA Rural Development office or by visiting USDA Rural Development’s web site at

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