• Granting Agency: Dept. of Energy
  • Appropriation Amount: $50,000,000
  • Grant Amount: $500,000 – $5,000,000 (No cost share)
  • Announcement Date: May 11, 2023
  • Closing Date: Pre-application July 13, 2023 – Full Application Oct, 12, 2023

Read the FOA (PDF)

OCED will provide financial investment, technical assistance, and other resources to advance clean energy demonstrations and energy solutions that benefit rural and remote communities. ERA aims to fund clean energy projects with three specific goals:

1. Deliver measurable benefits to energy customers in rural or remote areas by funding replicable energy projects that lower energy costs, improve energy access and resilience, and/or reduce environmental harm;
2. Support new rural or remote energy system models using climate-resilient technologies, business structures that promote economic resilience, new financing mechanisms, and/or new community engagement practices; and
3. Build clean energy knowledge, capacity, and self-reliance in rural America.

The FOA provides funding for clean energy projects up to $5 million that meaningfully benefit rural and remote communities by addressing their energy needs and priorities. Clean energy projects funded under the FOA must satisfy at least one of the objectives listed in BIL Section 40103(c)(3). These “resilient clean energy objectives” are:

A. Improving overall cost-effectiveness of energy generation, transmission, or distribution systems;
B. Siting or upgrading transmission and distribution lines;
C. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions from energy generation in rural or remote areas;
D. Providing or modernizing electric generation facilities;
E. Developing microgrids; and
F. Increasing energy efficiency.

Additional benefits could include:

G. Decrease energy burden in disadvantaged communities (DACs);
H. Decrease environmental exposure and burdens for DACs;
I. Increase parity in clean energy technology (e.g., solar, storage) access and adoption
in DACs;
J. Increase access to low-cost capital in DACs;
K. Increase clean energy enterprise creation and contracting (MBE/DBE) in DACs;
L. Increase clean energy jobs, job pipeline, and job training for individuals from DACs;
M. Increase energy resiliency in DACs; and
N. Increase energy democracy in DACs.

The FOA may consider the extent to which projects benefit communities most impacted by high energy burden, poor energy reliability and resilience, or environmental harm from energy generation. This may be considered using data from the Climate & Economic Justice Screening Tool (CEJST), DOE’s Energy Justice Dashboard, and information from applicants.

Eligible Applicants:
The applicant and subrecipient(s) must be domestic entities. The following types of entities are eligible to participate either as prime recipients or subrecipients of this FOA:

  1. State and local governmental entities;
  2. Indian Nations (DOE Order 144.1, 7.a);
  3. Non-profit entities;
  4. For-profit entities;
  5. Institutions of higher education;
  6. Consortia.