Funding Opportunities

Focus on Energy LED Bulb Discount
Residential customers in Wisconsin can purchase LED bulbs for $1 per bulb. Each residential electric account may order up to three, 10- or 12-packs of LED bulbs while supplies last.
 
For more information: Focus on Energy
Purchase by December 10, 2018.

Focus Low-E Storm Window Discounts
Homeowners can receive a 25 percent discount on up to 15 low-emissivity (low-E) storm windows directly from participating retail locations in this Focus on Energy program. Purchasers can self-install low-E storm windows (guide provided on Focus site) inside or outside of existing windows to create a layer of insulating air, which can lead to a 12 - 33 percent drop in annual spending on heating and cooling. Those are similar energy savings to installing ENERGY STAR rated replacement windows at nearly half the cost.
 
For more information: Focus on Energy
Purchase by December 31, 2018.

Apply for Solar Group Buy Assistance in 2019

The Midwest Renewable Energy Association invites applications from organizations and jurisdictions who wish to partner on a solar group buy (aka "Solarize") program in 2019. There is no cost to the sponsoring organizations or governments other than some staff time.
Read more about the group buy program design and view the application here.
The first round of applications is due Friday, November 16, 2018.
 
Investment to Improve Resilience, Reliability of Energy Infrastructure
The U.S. Department of Energy announced a $5.8 million funding opportunity for research and development of advanced tools and controls that will improve the resilience and reliability of the national power grid. Applicants should present projects that explore the use of big data, artificial intelligence, machine learning technology, and other tools to increase value of sensor data gathered from the grid. For details and the funding opportunity announcement.
 
Applications due: November 9, 2018
Direct questions to Maureen.Davidson@NETL.DOE.GOV.
 
Advanced Systems Integration for Solar Technologies
U.S. DOE’s Advanced Systems Integration for Solar Technologies (ASSIST) funding opportunity’s focus is to strengthen the integration of solar on the electricity grid to improve grid resiliency. Approximately ten projects between $2 - 10 million in size will be funded over three years.
 
Applicants should work with state, local, tribal, and territory owners and operators to proactively strengthen the security and resilience of essential services. Topics of interest include solutions to increase grid operators’ awareness of solar PV systems, to model interactions of solar systems in critical grid situations, and to provide tangible examples of resilience through solar PV.
 
Letter of intent due: November 14, 2018
Applications due: December 7, 2018
For details and the funding opportunity announcement
Direct questions to SI.FOA.SETO@ee.doe.gov.
 
2018 Pre-Disaster Mitigation
The Department of Homeland Security Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced funding opportunities for state, local, and tribal governments’ projects to reduce risk to individuals and property from natural hazards, as well as to reduce reliance on Federal funding from future disasters. FEMA expects to fund 250 projects from a $235 million budget. For details and the funding announcement.
 
Applications due: January 1, 2019
Direct questions to HMAGrantsHelpline@fema.dhs.gov
 
Tribal Request for Applications
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is seeking applications to receive tribal project funding to reduce diesel emissions or exposure to diesel emissions for fleets. Funding priority will go to communities affected by poor air quality. The EPA anticipates $2 million in available funding. For details and the funding announcement.
 
Application due: April 3, 2019
Direct questions to cleandiesel@epa.gov with subject line “Tribal RFA Question”.
 
Cooperative Forestry Funding
The University of Wisconsin Center for Cooperatives announced a request for proposals (RFP) to develop Wisconsin-based cooperatives or non-profits in forestry management, forest-related products, biomass energy, forest-owner policy initiatives, and support for existing forestry cooperatives or associations. Between $5,000 and $25,000 will help fund projects with the expectation of a 50 percent funding match from the recipient. UW/County Extension offices are no longer eligible recipients but may partner on projects. The funding announcement will be available in November.
 
Applications due: February 15, 2019
Direct questions to Courtney Berner, cberner@wisc.edu
 
Energy Innovation Grants
Grant recipients of the Public Service Commission’s (PSC) first Energy Innovation Grant Program will be determined at an open meeting of the PSCW, tentatively scheduled for September 27, 2018. An RFP for $5 million in grant funding was made available to local governments, k-12 schools and manufacturers this summer for energy efficiency, renewable energy and transportation technologies, comprehensive energy planning and resilience projects for 2019.
 
Focus RECIP Grants Restructured and Available
 
The PSC issued modifications to the Focus Renewable Energy Competitive Incentive Program (RECIP) for 2019:
  • There will be three funding cycles per year: January, May and September.
  • The projects will be able to be completed within up to 2 years (December 1, 2020) but scoring preference will be given to those that will be installed within 1 year.
  • There will be 2 tiers of funding to help serve midsize projects that are often less cost effective. 30-40 percent of funding will be set aside for PV projects 100 kW or less.
  • The application is simplified with less narrative required.
Total funding for projects is just under $3 million. There will be approximately one month to apply from the time the RFP is issued this September xx, 2018. Proposals are due October 23rd.
For details and the RECIP RFP posting.
Direct questions about RECIP to RECIP@focusonenergy.com
 
Solar for Good Grants
Update: Eligible applicants now include nonprofit housing authorities/agencies and public schools.
The Solar for Good grant program is offering another $100,000 worth of funding for Fall 2018. RENEW Wisconsin’s Solar for Good initiative fosters the expansion of solar power among mission-based nonprofits and houses of worship in Wisconsin. Through the generosity of local philanthropists Cal and Laurie Couillard and additional donors, RENEW Wisconsin awards grants to nonprofit organizations to assist them in installing solar power. Solar for Good offers small grants for technical assistance to get projects started and see them through to success as well.
 
Applications will be open on Monday, October 1. Applications for mission-based nonprofits are due by Tuesday, November 13 at 5:00pm. Applications for nonprofit housing authorities/agencies and public schools are due by Tuesday, November 20 at 5:00pm. Grantees will be announced on or before Monday, November 26. Apply here.
 
Focus Bid for Efficiency Online Auction
The Bid for Efficiency Offering is an online auctionwhere Business Incentive Program (BIP) customers and/or Trade Allies bid for additional financial incentives above current prescriptive and custom levels. Using an online auction platform, customers and Trade Allies can submit bids that identify the unit price needed to deliver the estimated kWh or Therms savings from the energy efficiency project. The winner of the auction is based on the lowest price per energy unit saved unless otherwise specified.
 
For more information contact: bidforefficiency@focusonenergy.com or 877.334.1721.
Informational webinars. Register for either Aug 8 or Aug 16, 2018.
RFQ Response Deadline – August 28, 2018
Auction Event – September 11, 2018
 
WERCBench Labs Accelerator
The WERCBench Labs Accelerator focuses on advancing technology and business models for Energy, Power, and Controls industry start-ups. The program provides the opportunity to interact directly with experienced and technical professionals. M-WERC, through funding from Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, is offering $40,000 for each start-up business accepted into the program. Applications are due by July 31, 2018.

Focus RECIP RFP Coming Soon

Focus on Energy just announced that the Public Service Commission (PSC) of Wisconsin has allocated funding for renewable energy incentives for 2019-2022. The Renewable Energy Competitive Incentive Program (RECIP) will be issuing a Request for Proposals (RFP) in the fall of this year. This is tentatively scheduled for September to fund projects for 2019. More details will be released later in the summer.
Questions? RECIP@focusonenergy.com.

NEW WPPI RFP for Non-profit Renewables

WPPI Energy is offering a grant for the nonprofit 501©(3) customers of its member utilities for renewable energy installations. This includes schools, colleges, universities, and units of government. Funding of $5,000 - $25,000 will support solar PV up to 20 kW and wind turbine projects up to 10 kW. Other electric generating technologies are eligible as well.
 
Projects must be located at and owned by the non-profit for the duration of the project life and must be interconnected to the member utility distribution system. A total of $150,000 is available and proposals are due by July 3, 2018.

To apply, complete the Renewable Energy Application and reference Renewable Energy Grants for Nonprofits
Visit www.wppienergy.org/renewablerfp for more information. Contact Eric Kostecki, Manager of Customer Project Support, with questions at ekostecki@wppienergy.org or (608) 834-4549.

Energy Innovation Grant Program

Municipal and tribal governments, k-12 school districts, and manufacturers are eligible to apply for the $5 million Public Service Commission of WI (PSCW) Energy Innovation Grant Program. The grants will support the reduction of energy consumption and its cost to businesses and taxpayers, increased use of renewable energy and transportation technologies, comprehensive energy planning, and bolstered preparedness and resiliency in energy systems. Project scoring will recognize the benefits of innovation and energy resiliency (energy storage). Proposals are due July 30 at noon.  

Note: This grant uses federal dollars so includes requirements about wage rates and purchasing consistent with federal requirements. Questions about the grant are answered in the FAQ at the link below. Any new questions can be submitted to the PSC only through June 22nd. This is a pilot year for this grant program, which  may be offered and modified at $5million per year for 4 more years. RFP for the $5 million Energy Innovation Grant Program

Funding for Data-Driven Energy Decision-Making in Local Governments

The Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) Cities Leading through Energy Analysis and Planning (Cities-LEAP) project helps cities integrate energy analysis and data into their strategic decision-making.
As part of the Cities-LEAP project, EERE has released a Notice of Intent for a Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) to solicit applications to advance data-driven decision-making by local governments in support of their climate and energy goals.  The FOA will be targeted toward local and tribal governments.  Prospective applicants should begin developing partnerships, formulating ideas, and gathering data in anticipation of the issuance of this FOA.
EERE plans to issue the FOA in March 2016 through the EERE Exchange website.  For more information about the FOA and tips for preparing for its release, review the Notice of Intent.
 

USDA’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program
The Rural Utility Service’s (RUS) Energy Efficiency and Conservation Loan Program (EECLP), managed by the USDA, is a new program with $250 million for direct loans to rural electric cooperatives and other rural electricity providers. EECLP supports energy efficiency, demand side management, and renewable energy generation. Electricity providers can re-loan funds to residential and commercial customers to make energy efficiency improvements. Customers would then repay the loan through on-bill financing. EECLP can assist with roof top solar systems as well. For more information 

Wisconsin Office of Energy Innovation

Focus on Energy

  • Focus on Energy's Residential Programs for Wisconsin households.
  • Focus on Energy's Business Programs include:
    • Business Incentive Program that serves farms, businesses, schools, local and non-local governments, industrial (small to medium), and hospitality customers.
    • Chain Stores and Franchises Program that serves retail, restaurants, grocery and convenience stores.
    • Large Energy Users Program for those with average monthly demand of 1,000 kW of electricity or 100,000 therms of natural gas and have previously been billed $60,000 for electricity, natural gas, or both.
    • Retro-commissioning Program for customers interested in building retro-commissioning services.
    • Small Business Program for those with average monthly demand of 100 kW or less.
    • A forthcoming Design Assistance Program.

Other Funding Programs

  • DSIRE - Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency by the US Department of Energy provides state, local, utility and federal incentives and policies that promote renewable energy and energy efficiency.
  • Farm Energy - sponsored by the Environmental Law & Policy Center (ELPC), provides information on the Federal Farm Bill, including summaries of new energy programs, REAP application assistance, and energy efficiency and renewable energy opportunities that benefit farmers, ranchers and rural communities.
  • Got Moola - a resource compiled for small agricultural businesses, provides links to banks, technical assistance, funding opportunities and many programs and organizations to help grow their businesses. Assembled and updated by Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection (DATCP), Division of Agri-Business.
  • The Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) - offers cost-share grants and loan guarantees to agricultural producers and rural small businesses for energy efficiency improvement or renewable energy development projects.
  • Wisconsin Board of Comissioners of Public Lands-offers project loans to municipalities and school districts, with earnings that fund public school libraries throughout Wisconsin.
  • Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC)
  • Wisconsin Grant Programs - compiled by the State Energy Office, provides a listing of renewable energy related funding opportunities offered by government entities, utilities, companies, and organizations in Wisconsin with links to each program.
  • Wisconsin Energy Efficiency Project (We2) - We2 helps homeowners in Milwaukee and Madison, and businesses in Milwaukee, Madison, and Racine, to reduce fossil fuel emissions, lower energy use, improve buildings' energy efficiency, and grow the economy.

Funding Resources

  • USDA Grants and Loans for Rural Energy
    Farmers, ranchers and rural small businesses can apply now for grants and loan guarantees for clean energy projects under the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP). REAP, renewed in the 2014 Farm Bill at $50 million, supports a wide range of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, including wind, solar, small hydroelectric and biomass energy technologies. An early application window will end in April or May. Grants cover up to 25% of project costs. The loan guarantees facilitate lending by providing a guarantee of a portion of the principal to the lender.

    The official funding notice has not yet been published, but you can prepare your application. The USDA is working on implementing new rules from the 2014 Farm Bill and the timing for these new rules is uncertain.

    Farmenergy.org, provides tools and tips to help facilitate application preparation and self-evaluate scoring.  Templates are available at the Iowa USDA REAP web page. Check in with the state staff of USDA rural development who can help and may need to visit the project during the application process. Wisconsin’s contact is Brenda Heinen, 715.345.7615, Ext 139.

  • For information about Energy Funding and Economic Development go to the Resources tab