Energy Efficiency and Solar Grants Program releases details for next Energy Efficiency Grant round

Source: Washington Department of Commerce, October 8, 2020

Commerce has announced program details about the next round of funding for the Energy Efficiency Grant (EE Grant). An estimated $3,570,000 in funding will be available to grantees with up to $500,000 available to each applicant. There is no minimum request amount. The application period will open in November with applications due in January 2021.

The EE Grant provides competitive funding to federally recognized Tribal governments, local agencies, public higher education institutions, school districts and state agencies. This grant is for energy efficiency retrofits at existing facilities that result in energy and operational cost savings.

To increase the equitable distribution of resources and funding, the program sets aside 20% of the funding for projects located in small towns and cities (populations of 5,000 or less). In addition, set aside projects require a lower match requirement, ensuring that rural communities with fewer resources also benefit from these projects. In 2019, new proviso language was adopted to allow the inclusion of federally recognized Tribal governments as eligible applicants.

This request enables agencies to take actionable steps toward reducing energy and water consumption in public facilities improving the operational bottom line. In addition to realizing cost savings, this program provides opportunities to improve the health and safety for building occupants such as students, teachers and other public employees, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The cost savings could be directed towards filling critical needs, such as hiring additional teachers, addressing deferred maintenance backlogs, or meeting the demands of reduced operating budgets and the health pandemic. These projects also create and support construction jobs in the green economy throughout the state, especially in small towns and cities.

The estimated timeline for this round of funding is below. There will be a question and answer period once the application opens. Please visit the EE Grant webpage for more details.

Estimated DateEvent
November 2020RFA and Application Released
November 2020Bidders Conference
January 2021Application Closes
April 2021Final Decisions
April 2021Awards

The Solar grant program will now be run separately from the Energy Efficiency grant program. We will release a timeline for the Solar Grant program as soon as it is finalized. For now, you can visit the EE&S webpage to sign up for updates.