ALBUQUERQUE, NM – The City of Albuquerque is getting $5.1 million in energy efficiency block grants, $750,000 of which will be used to purchase new hybrid vehicles, according to New Mexico Business Weekly.

The funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) will be used for solar installations at city-owned parking facilities, the purchase of 20 to 25 hybrid vehicles, such as Honda Civic Hybrids and Ford Escape Hybrids, and new "cool roofs" for city buildings that will allow the installation of photovoltaic systems.

The list of projects came from an energy task force of business and government leaders convened to prioritize the spending of the ARRA funds.

Of the funds, $2.75 million will go toward solar installations on four city multi-level parking structures that are good candidates for solar systems. The parking structures also would have sites to allow people to charge electric and hybrid-electric vehicles, including the general public and city officials, who will be driving the new hybrid vehicles.

About $1.5 million will be used to re-roof a number of city facilities that currently are not engineered to hold new photovoltaic systems. This will prepare the buildings for the installation of thin-film PV systems.