Funding

Past Funding Opportunities

OEI: Rural Energy Startup Program – $2.33 Million

The Office of Energy Innovation (OEI) at the Public Service Commission (PSC) is administering Wisconsin’s Rural Energy Startup Program (RESP) funded by US DOE’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG). This program is geared to Wisconsin’s disadvantaged rural and Tribal communities that aren’t eligible to apply for EECBG funds through DOE. RESP funds strategies to reduce energy use, reduce fossil fuel emissions, and improve energy efficiency.

Projects must fall under one of three activities:

  1. Comprehensive Energy Planning
  2. Renewable Resource Planning
  3. Energy Audits and Building Upgrades.

Eligible Applicants: Wisconsin’s disadvantaged rural and Tribal communities. The specific communities that qualify for this funding are determined using several sources that have been rolled into a searchable Map app built for OEI. It includes maps that are based on census tract information using the Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool (CEJST), maps of Wisconsin rural areas by zip code and population size, and data from the Office of Management and Budget.

Due Date: PASSED Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, until funds are expended or March 29, 2024, at 1:30 PM Central, whichever comes first.

For more information RESP Webpage

Webinar that cover the program application instructions, Recording here, and slides here
Frequently Asked Questions
To learn How to Use the PSC Grants System
To receive updates from the PSC on RESP, subscribe to docket 9714-FG-2023.


DOE: Advancing the National Clean Hydrogen Strategy Program – $59 Million

The purpose of the office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Regional Clean Hydrogen Hubs Program is to create networks of hydrogen infrastructure and accelerate the use of hydrogen as a clean energy carrier.

Individual awards ranging between $250,000 and $10 million will aim to advance the fueling infrastructure for medium- and heavy-duty (MD/HD) vehicles and other heavy transportation applications; develop and demonstrate hydrogen-based zero-emissions equipment for seaport facilities; address key challenges to sitting, permitting and installation; and improve community engagement and outreach to support environmental justice and ensure equitable deployment of clean hydrogen systems.

Applications are considered in two submission phases: a concept paper, and a full application. Only entities who have submitted the concept paper can submit a full application.

Eligible Applicants: State, local and tribal governments, for-profit and nonprofit-entities and higher education institutions

Concept Paper Due: January 26th, 2024
Full Application Due: PASSED – March 22nd, 2024

Learn More about the funding opportunity to advance the National Clean Hydrogen Strategy


EPA: Grant Funding to Address Indoor Air Pollution in Schools – $32 million

This funding opportunity will provide approximately $32 million (awarding four to six grants of $5 million – $8 million) to support five years funding for grants and other activities to monitor and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and other air pollutants at schools in low-income, disadvantaged, and Tribal communities through the development and adoption of comprehensive indoor air quality (IAQ) management plans. There are four project areas:

  1. IAQ and greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reduction Capacity Building targeting facility management staff, health officers, and key decision makers at K-12 schools and/or school districts in low-income and disadvantaged communities.
  2. The same for Tribal Communities
  3. IAQ and GHG Reduction Training and Education Campaign for facility management staff and health officers at K-12 schools and school districts in low-income, disadvantaged, and Tribal communities, and/or the development of qualified K-12 school staff necessary to execute comprehensive IAQ and GHG Reduction Plans.
  4. IAQ and GHG Reduction Research and Demonstration Projects in K-12 schools located in low-income, disadvantaged, and/or Tribal communities.

Eligible Applicants: States, territories, Indian Tribes, nonprofit organizations, and local governments and educational agencies.

Submit Optional Notice of Intent to Apply: February 22, 2024.

To allow for efficient management of the competitive grant process, EPA requests that applicants send an email to IAQSchools@epa.gov.  Include a project title, project area(s), the applicant’s name, and the expected funding amount that will be requested.

Applications Due: PASSED – March 19, 2024, 10:59 PM CST

Grant Support: through the Great Lakes Environmental Justice TCTAC. To help applicants, EPN, a collaborator on the EJ TCTAC, has created a suggested 6-step application process—including a suggested timeline. Go to #1 on EPN’s website for more information.

NOFO: Grant Funding to Address Indoor Air Pollution at Schools – updated January 24, 2024 (PDF)

Information Session 1 Webinar presentation slides (PDF); view recording
Information Session Webinar 2 Webinar presentation slides (PDF) (February 2024); view recording


WI OEI: Energy Innovation Grant Program (EIGP) – $7.8 Million

Wisconsin’s Office of Energy Innovation (OEI) Energy Innovation Grant Program (EIGP) opened November 30, 2023. The PSC allocated $7.8 million for EIGP at an open meeting November 3, 2023. The funds are through a DOE grant from the birpartisan infrastructure law’s EECBG program and the office of state and community energy programs (SCEP).

These funds support projects in 3 categories:

  1. Renewable Energy & Energy Storage – $3.4 Million
  2. Energy Efficiency and Demand Response – $3.4 Million
  3. Comprehensive Energy Planning & Microgrid Feasibility Studies – $1 Million.

Eligible Applicants: Municipalities, Universities, Schools, Hospitals, and Like Entities (MUSH Market): cities, villages, towns, counties, K-12 school districts, tribes, municipal water and wastewater utilities, municipal electric utilities, municipal natural gas utilities, electric cooperatives, University of Wisconsin System campuses and facilities, Wisconsin Technical College System, public or nonprofit hospitals,  501(c)(3) nonprofits, and manufacturers.

Due Date: PASSED –  March 1st, 2024 before 1:30 pm CST.

Link to EIGP Application Instructions

EIGP Program Application Instructions Webinar slides here

For more information visit EIGP Webpage
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
To learn How to Use the PSC Grants System
To receive updates from the PSC on EIGP, subscribe to docket 9709-FG-2023


FEMA: Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) – $1 Billion

The Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) program is an annual grant program for state agencies, county governments, local governments and Tribal Nations to implement long-term, cost-effective mitigation actions to reduce risk to infrastructure and communities. These funds will help address future risks from natural disasters, foster greater community resilience, and reduce disaster suffering. Local governments can submit subapplications to their state, territory, or tribal application agency to target specific projects to benefit their communities.

Eligible Applicants: states, territories and federally recognized tribal governments.

Eligible Subapplicants: local governments including cities, townships, counties, special district governments, state agencies, and federally recognized tribal governments.

Applications Due: PASSED – February 29, 2024

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Building Resilient Infrastructure and Communities (BRIC) Direct Technical Assistance 

 FEMA is providing wide ranging non-financial support through BRIC Direct Technical Assistance (DTA), including climate risk assessments, community engagement, partnership building, and mitigation and climate adaptation planning. Assistance can range from pre-application activities to grant closeout.

Interested communities and tribes should submit a BRIC Direct Technical Assistance Request Form to be considered.

Forms due: PASSED – February 29, 2024


Treasury & IRS: Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit for Solar and Wind 

The Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program through the Inflation Reduction Act promote cost-saving clean energy investments in low-income communities, on Indian land, as part of affordable housing developments, and benefitting low-sincome households.

The bonus credit provides a 10 or 20 percentage point increase to the investment tax credit for qualified solar and wind energy facilities with a maximum net output of less than five megawatts (AC).

Eligible Applicants: Wind or solar project that will be completed within the next 12 months, are less than 5 MW, are:

  • located in a Low-Income Community
  • located on Indian Land
  • part of a Qualified Low-Income Residential Building Project
  • part of a Qualified Low-Income Economic Benefit Project

Due Date: PASSED – Applications will be accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis through February 29th, 2024 for categories with remaining capacity. It is recommended to review the fact sheet and prepare to file for an allocation ASAP.

Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program | Department of Energy Justice and Equity
Low-Income Communities Bonus Credit Program / IRS
Low Income Communities Bonus (LICB) Fact Sheet


EPA: 2023 Clean School Bus (CSB) Rebate Program

EPA anticipates awarding at least $500 million in rebate funding with the potential to modify this figure based on the application pool and other factors.

Eligible applicants can apply to receive funding for the purchase of up to 25 zero-emission (ZE) and/or clean school buses, along with ZE charging infrastructure and eligible workforce development costs. Selectees may be eligible for Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) tax credits applicable to their bus and infrastructure purchases. For example, the Clean Vehicle tax credits for qualifying school buses are worth up to $40,000.

Priority Applicants: those that will replace buses serving high-need local education agencies, rural areas, Tribal school districts funded by the Bureau of Indian Affairs and public school districts receiving basic support payments for students living on Tribal land. In addition, EPA is committed to ensuring the CSB Program delivers on the Biden-Harris Administration’s Justice40 Initiative that at least 40% of the benefits of certain federal investments flow to disadvantaged communities.

Application Deadline: PASSED – February 14, 2024 before 3PM CST

For more information see online application portal

 

Clean School Bus Rebates: Online Application Forms

2023 Clean School Bus Rebates Program Guide

Clean School Bus Helpline

Joint Office Technical Assistance Helpline

Webinars about the CSB Program


IRS: IRA Elective Pay/Direct Pay Pre-filling Registration Assistance

The IRS held office hours (through Microsoft Teams) to help tax-exempt entities with the pre-filing registration process on the new IRA Pre-filing Registration Tool. Pre-filing registration is a required step for applicable entities and eligible taxpayers to take advantage of elective payment/direct pay or transfer of credits available in the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

January 30, 2024 12-1 PM CST Register Here
February 2, 2024 12-1 PM CST Register Here
February 6, 2024 12-1 PM CST Register Here
February 9, 2024 12-1 PM CST Register Here

WI Office of Rural Prosperity: Thrive Rural Wisconsin

Thrive Rural Wisconsin ,a program by the Office of Rural Prosperity in the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), helps rural communities leverage IRA funding for sustainable energy projects. Management support will be provided by the Office of Rural Prosperity, also applicants will have the ability to apply for predevelopment funds through WEDC for projects.

Eligible Applicants: County economic development organizations, nonprofits, and tribal organizations that are based in communities of 10,000 people or fewer.

Application Due: PASSED – January 16, 2024

For Informational Webinar Recordings 


ACEEE: Technical Assistance for Communities to Improve Rental Energy Efficiency and Housing Affordability

ACEEE’s Energy Equity for Renters initiative is offering no-cost technical assistance services for up to 10 local governments and community-based organizations (CBOs) to help tackle the challenge of reducing energy waste in rental housing. This opportunity will be available for communities seeking to improve the energy efficiency of rental housing while also preserving or expanding housing affordability. Reducing rental housing energy use is vital for tackling climate change. These homes are less energy efficient than others, consuming 15% more energy per square foot on average than owner-occupied homes and leaving one-third of renters struggling to pay high bills.

Technical assistance work must involve CBOs working alongside local governments to ensure that any initiatives supported through this work are community-driven.

Application Due: PASSED – Friday, January 5, 2024

For more information: Visit ACEEE website and for a link to the online application.

Contact localpolicy@aceee.org with any questions.


USDOE: Communities Local Energy Action Program (LEAP)

U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s  Communities Local Energy Action Program (LEAP) will provide technical assistance services valued at over $18 million to support 24-32 communities to develop and advance their own community-driven clean energy transition approach. This is not a funding opportunity announcement; however selected communities may have the opportunity to receive funds (up to $50,000) for services rendered to help implement the technical assistance.  Communities LEAP seeks to facilitate sustained community-wide economic empowerment through clean energy, improve local environmental conditions, and open the way for other benefits primarily through DOE’s clean energy deployment work.

DOE has designed this initiative with the aim of:

  • Recognizing each community’s specific energy-related challenges and opportunities.
  • Supporting community member and stakeholder leadership in designing and implementing actions to address those challenges and opportunities.
  • Building toward long-term community economic and environmental change and a more sustainable, resilient, and equitable future.

Eligible applicants:  low-income, energy-burdened communities that are also either disadvantaged or experiencing direct economic impacts from a shift away from historical reliance on fossil fuels. Multi-stakeholder applicant teams must include at least one Community-Based Organization and one local government or tribal entity.

Application DeadlinePASSED – December 14, 2023, at 4:00 p.m. CST. Selections are expected to be announced March 2024.

To learn more about the second phase of Communities LEAP, register for webinars, and submit an application, please visit energy.gov/communitiesLEAP.


Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) National Grants – $115 million

DERA funding is intended to incentivize and accelerate the upgrading or retirement of the nation’s legacy diesel engine fleet. Eligible activities include the retrofit or replacement of existing diesel engines, vehicles, and equipment with EPA and California Air Resources Board certified engine configurations and verified retrofit and idle reduction technologies. EPA anticipates that approximately 4-10 cooperative agreements will be made per each of EPA’s ten regions subject to the availability of funds, the quantity and quality of applications received, and other considerations. Wisconsin is in EPA Region 5.

Eligible Entities: Regional, state, local, or Tribal agency, or port authority, which has jurisdiction over transportation or air quality. School districts, municipalities, metropolitan planning organizations (MPOs), cities, and counties

Deadline: PASSED – December 1, 2023


CEC: Environmental Justice for Climate (EJ4Climate) Grant Program- $2 million

The EJ4Climate Grant Program by the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC) provides funding directly to community-based organizations and seeks to support environmental justice by facilitating the involvement and empowerment of communities searching for solutions and the development of partnerships to address their environmental and human health vulnerabilities, including those due to climate change impacts. The CEC is calling for project proposals that will advance community-driven strategies in support of environmental justice and community resilience to the impacts of extreme weather events in urban areas. Projects will be implemented in overburdened communities in urban areas. Projects should create partnerships, advance community resilience, ensure meaningful local participation, and include an action plan with measurable results.

Eligible Entities: Nonprofit and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), civil society groups, environmental groups, community-based associations, faith-based organizations, tribal nations, and Indigenous Peoples and communities

Deadline: Proposals due: PASSED
November 9, 2023

For more information and to apply


DOE: Energy Futures Grants – $27 million

These grants will support community-led innovation, prioritizing planning and analysis to ensure the benefits of clean energy flow to disadvantaged communities. Awards will support at least 50 multijurisdictional partnerships for states/territories, local government, and Tribes.

Eligible Entities: State, local, and Tribal government partners nonprofit partnerships

Deadline: PASSED – November 10, 2023

For more information and application form


Public Comment on EIGP & EECBG Grant Programs Open through October 25

A Public Service Commission memo has been issued for public comment on the scope of both the 2023 round of Energy Innovation Grant Program (EIGP) and the scope of the Energy Efficiency Conservation Block Grant Program (EECBG).

Comments are due by 1:30 pm on Wednesday, October 25, 2023. Submit a comment here.

Location: The Commission meeting will be held at the Hill Farms Office building and broadcasted virtually through the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin’s YouTube channel

Subscribe to the program dockets (9709-FG-2023 for EIGP, 9714-FG-2023 for EECBG) using EZ-subscribe to receive updates


EPA: Solar for All Funding

Solar for All will award up to 60 grants to states, territories, Tribal governments, municipalities, and nonprofits to expand the number of low-income and disadvantaged communities primed for residential solar investment—enabling millions of low-income households to access affordable, resilient, and clean solar energy. The Solar for All competition is to create programs to tackle barriers -financial and technical- to disadvantaged communities to deploy solar on residential rooftops (single and multi-family) or community solar for residential customers up to 5MW where half the power goes to residents, and associated storage (for resilience) or enabling upgrades (to ensure dwelling is solar ready like energy efficiency upgrades). So, these are not grants for projects but for programs. Grant funds may be used for financial assistance (minimum of 75% in subgrants, loans, rebates), project deployment tech assistance (workforce development program, outreach & ed, project deployment assistance- permitting, siting, interconnection), and program administration and procuring services and tools.

Notice of Intent (NOI) DuePASSED
August 14 for municipalities and eligible nonprofits; August 28, 2023 for tribal governments.

There are 5 items in the NOI. Number 3. Number & Type of Applications

a. Award option 1, 2, or 3. Local and tribal govts and eligible nonprofits and coalitions are in option 1 F

b. Program coverage – geography

c. Estimated EPA funding requested (can be changed in actual proposal). The “small” program: no less than $25 million -$100m in funding that supports the number of households the program is designed to serve – must specify the number of HH up to 10,000 for the small. Medium and large up to $400m.

Application Due: PASSED September 26, 2023 at 10:59 PM CST through Grants.gov.

Solar for All Webinar recording

Solar for All Notice of Funding Opportunity

Direct questions to ggrf@epa.gov.


Travel Support for Midwest Climate Resilience Conference October 25-27, Duluth, MN  

A travel scholarship application  is open to local governments, Tribal representatives, nonprofit organizations, community-based organizations, and other community leaders to attend the Midwest Climate Resilience Conference hosted by the University of Minnesota. Conference themes include: Actionable Climate Science; Cascading Climate Impacts; Collaborative Climate Action; Creative Communications and Engagement; Equitable Adaptation; Financial Solutions; and Policy, Governance & Law.

Applications PASSED
Accepted through Friday, August 25.

Preview the scholarship application form (PDF).


USDOE: Renewable Energy Siting through Technical Engagement & Planning (R-STEP)

More Information Renewable Energy Siting through Technical Engagement and Planning (R-STEP) program

Proposal release September 12

This USDOE funding program is designed to support local communities and states in planning and evaluating proposed siting and development of large-scale solar, wind, and battery storage. The Renewable Energy Siting through Technical Engagement and Planning (R-STEP) program seeks to expand the decision-making capacity and expertise of state and local governments around large-scale renewable energy planning, siting, and permitting recognizing that siting is a hyperlocal issue with each community having different needs and priorities when it comes to hosting large-scale renewable energy facilities.

Applicants: “Collaborative” – a cross-disciplinary team that could include: state energy offices, governor’s offices, University Extension, universities, non-governmental organizations, and community-based organizations.

Funding: $1-2 million each for 5-7 state-based Collaboratives

Application period: PASSED
September 12 – November 3, 2023, 4:00 PM CST

Informational webinar: September 11, 1pm CST. To Register

Questions? Please contact ENERGYWERX: info@energywerx.org


RENEW: Solar for Good

The Fall 2023 Solar for Good grant cycle opens Friday, September 1, 2023.  Winning organizations will be provided with up to 50% of the modules needed to complete their project of solar panels, solar canopies or project grants. Remaining modules (same brand/model) can be purchased from the Couillard Solar Foundation (CSF) while supplies last. The cost for additional panels at this time* will be between $0.50-$0.55 per watt (*NOTE: prices are subject to change). Grants for donated modules DO NOT include shipping costs. Modules available for donation for the Fall 2023 round will be Philadelphia Solar Phenex 540W bifacial modules. All proceeds from the sales of additional panels go back to providing grants and administration for Solar for Good and the Couillard Solar Foundation.

Cash grants are also available for the Fall 2023 cycle. Winning organizations can receive $150 for every 1 kW of solar energy installed (max of $10,000 for projects < 100 kW and a max of $20,000 for projects > 100 kW).

Eligible Entities: Wisconsin Mission-based nonprofits  & houses of worship

Deadline: PASSED
Completed applications must be submitted by Sunday, October 1, 2023.

Links for Solar for Good

Design Tips FAQ by CSF is available for anyone interested in optimizing the donated bi-facial modules.

Solar Canopy Design: A brochure for CSF’s solar canopy designs. Consider a solar canopy for providing electricity and shading at places like parks, picnic areas, community gathering spaces, community pools, and farmers markets.


EPA Clean Communities Investment Accelerator – $6 billion

This GGRF grant competition for the Clean Communities Investment Accelerator (CCIA) will provide grants to support two-to-seven hub nonprofit organizations, enabling them to provide funding and technical assistance to public, quasi-public, not-for-profit, and non-profit community lenders working in low-income and disadvantaged communities—supporting the goal that every community in the country has access to the capital they need to deploy clean technology projects.

Eligible Entities: Nonprofit financing institutions that meet certain eligibility criteria (See Section III of funding opportunity for eligibility information)

Deadline: PASSED
October 12, 2023


EPA National Clean Investment Fund – $14 billion

This GGRF grant competition for the National Clean Investment Fund (NCIF) will provide grants to support two-to-three national clean financing institutions, enabling them to partner with the private sector to provide accessible, affordable financing for tens of thousands of clean technology projects nationwide.

Eligible Entities: National nonprofit financing institutions that meet certain eligibility criteria (See Section III of funding opportunity for eligibility information)

 Deadline: PASSED
October 12, 2023


Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Tribal Climate Resilience Annual Awards Program – $120 million

The BIA Branch of Tribal Climate Resilience (TCR) will make available approximately $120 million to federally-recognized Tribes and tribal organizations to increase climate adaptation and resilience capacity and support related Tribal planning and implementation efforts.

Eligible Entities: Tribes and Tribal organizations

Deadline: PASSED
October 13, 2023

2023 TCR Annual Awards solicitation

More Information

A recording of the FY2023 Annual Awards FAQ Webinar held on August 2, 2023 by the Institute for Tribal Environmental Professionals (ITEP) Tribes and Climate Change Program is available to view online.


EPA Tribal Support for E-Enterprise for the Environment, 2024-2029 –

EPA’s Office of E-Enterprise is offering  $1 million in funding with the goal  to support and enhance tribal participation in E-Enterprise by providing tribes necessary research, training, and technical assistance. The scope of work is broad and may involve supporting topics that relate to many environmental program areas including but not limited to air, climate, water, chemical safety, land clean-up and revitalization, enforcement and compliance, and environmental justice. EPA intends to award $1 million over 5-years to one recipient through a cooperative agreement.

Eligible Entities: Interstate, intrastate, states, local entities, public and private nonprofit institution/organization, federally recognized Tribal governments, U.S. territories and possessions, individuals/families

Deadline: PASSED
October 16, 2023

Informational Webinar: September 20, 2023, from 12:00-1:30pm CST. webinar for potential applicants using Zoom. Register for this webinar

Funding Announcement: EPA Tribal Support for E-Enterprise for the Environment, 2024-2029


USDA:  REAP Grants & Guaranteed Loans

Rural Energy for America (REAP) guaranteed grants and loans of $2 billion over the next decade for rural ag producers and rural small businesses are now available (rural = population less than 50,000). Grants were increased through the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) to offset 40% of project costs and they cover both energy efficiency and renewable energy. Note: this does not cover residential farm energy projects (unless install second meter).  Funding for underutilized renewable energy technologies for $303.8 million is included.

Due Date: PASSED
March 31, 2023
, for Round 1 grants; for grants less than $20k and greater than $20k. $1million per applicant ceiling. Total $820 million available

Guaranteed loans on a continuous monthly cycle; up to $25 million per loan.

Wisconsin Information

DOE Office of Indian Energy Powering Unelectrified Tribal Buildings – $15 million

Eligible Entities: Indian Tribes, which include Alaska Native Regional Corporations and Village Corporations, Intertribal Organizations, and Tribal Energy Development Organization

Through this funding opportunity, the Office of Indian Energy plans to deploy energy infrastructure or integrated energy system(s) to provide electricity to unelectrified Tribal buildings.

For more information, visit the funding opportunity.