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Funding Opportunities

Solar Panels, courtesy of NRELThe links below provide an introduction to federal and state funding sources, success stories, and other resources.

NOTE: Some of the following documents are available as Adobe Acrobat PDFs. Download Acrobat Reader.

Federal Funding

U.S. Department of Agriculture Funding

Business and Industry Guaranteed Loans
Environmental Quality Incentives Program
This USDA - Natural Resources Conservation Service program offers funding for certain management practices and structures that promote environmental quality. In some parts of the country, these funds have been used for renewable energy projects that address environmental problems, such as solar or wind-powered stock-watering systems that improve grazing practices.
REAP: the Rural Energy for America Program
Formerly known as Section 9006 (the Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Program), this program was created in the 2002 Farm Bill and greatly expanded in the 2008 Farm Bill. It offers grants and loan guarantees to farmers, ranchers, and rural small businesses for energy efficiency and renewable energy projects. An excellent overview is provided by the Environmental Law and Policy Center.
Rural Business Opportunity Grants
Rural Cooperative Development Grants
Small Business Innovation Research - USDA
Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Program Grants
As part of USDA's Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service, SARE offers grants for research, marketing, and demonstration projects, including renewable energy projects. SARE's website also offers excellent publications, success stories, and links.
Value-Added Producer Grants
May be used for planning activities and working capital for marketing value-added agricultural products and for farm-based renewable energy. In 2006, over 50% of grants awarded through this program were related to farm energy production.

Federal Tax Credits

Energy Policy Act of 2005
A wide variety of tax credits for businesses and homeowners who buy fuel-efficient vehicles, install energy-efficient appliances and products, produce their own biodiesel or ethanol, or install renewable energy. Includes a 30% business tax credit for qualified fuel cell power plants, a 10% credit for qualifying stationary microturbine power plants, and a 30% credit for qualifying solar energy equipment.
Renewable Electricity Production Tax Credit
A tax credit of 1.5Ę per kilowatt-hour for the first 10 years of operation for electricity generated by wind, closed-loop biomass, and poultry waste. [PDF/124K]
Solar & Geothermal Business Energy Tax Credit
Tax credit equal to 10% of the purchase and installation cost of solar heating, solar electricity, or active geothermal energy equipment. Also see the Tax Incentives Assistance Project for more details. [PDF/108K]
Tax Incentives Assistance Project (TIAP)
The Tax Incentives Assistance Project (TIAP), sponsored by a coalition of public interest nonprofit groups, government agencies, and other organizations in the energy efficiency field, is designed to give consumers and businesses information they need to make use of the federal income tax incentives for energy efficient products and technologies passed by Congress as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and subsequently amended several times.

U.S. Department of Energy Funding

Inventions and Innovations Grants
Small Business Innovation Research - DOE

Small Business Administration Funding

Small Business Investment Companies
Small Business Loans

State and Local Funding

Database of State Incentives for Renewable Energy (DSIRE)
The databases on this website feature information on state, utility, and local government financial and regulatory incentives, as well as programs and policies designed to promote hydro power and other renewable-energy technologies.
The Alternative Fuels Data Center
Part of the U.S. Department of Energy, AFDC offers an overview of the alternative fuel industry, publications, links, and information on biodiesel and ethanol production, markets, energy balance, incentives and laws.

Success Stories

Overview of grant recipients for the Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Program
The USDA maintains an overview of grant recipients for the Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Program (Section 9006), including state-by-state links to individual success stories.
This EERE publication highlights one family farmís experience with the USDA Section 9006 Grant Program


EPA Tips and Techniques for Grant Writing
Grant writing tips.
Farm Energy
Farmenergy.org is run by the Environmental Law and Policy Center (ELPC). The website offers detailed information on the Section 9006 (renewable energy and energy efficiency funding) of the 2002 Farm Bill.
Farm Energy Audits: Availability, Usefulness, and Cost
Based on interviews with dozens of audit providers, agencies, utilities, farming and energy organizations, as well as hundreds of agricultural producers from around the U.S., this 2009 NCAT report offers recommendations for improving energy efficiency efforts in rural areas.
Offers a list of all currently available federal grant opportunities.
Harvesting Clean Energy
Harvesting Clean Energy is devoted to assisting rural communities and landowners in the Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana) with renewable energy technologies.
U.S. Department of Energy Business and Financial Assistance Website
Also known as the e-Center, this website allows visitors to browse recently posted funding opportunites, as well tips and advice on doing business with the U.S. Department of Energy.


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This page was last updated on: May 20, 2016