Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program

What does this funding get me?

This funding consists of formula grants to states, local governments, and Tribes (more info here) and competitive grants, now closed, that were open to local governments and Tribes not eligible for formula grants.

Full guidance on eligible projects is here, but the funds are generally available to projects that cut carbon emissions, improve energy efficiency, or reduce energy use, including such things as: 

  1. Development and implementation of an energy efficiency and conservation strategy
  2. Retaining technical consultant services to assist the eligible entity in the development of such a strategy
  3. Conducting residential and commercial building energy audits
  4. Establishment of financial incentive programs for energy efficiency improvements
  5. The provision of grants to nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies to perform energy efficiency retrofits
  6. Development and implementation of energy efficiency and conservation programs for buildings and facilities within the jurisdiction of the eligible entity
  7. Development and implementation of programs to conserve energy used in transportation
  8. Development and implementation of building codes and inspection services to promote building energy efficiency
  9. Application and implementation of energy distribution technologies that significantly increase energy efficiency
  10. Activities to increase participation and efficiency rates for material conservation programs, including source reduction, recycling, and recycled content procurement programs that lead to increases in energy efficiency
  11. The purchase and implementation of technologies to reduce, capture, and, to the maximum extent practicable, use methane and other greenhouse gases generated by landfills or similar sources
  12. Replacement of traffic signals and street lighting with energy-efficient lighting technologies
  13. Development, implementation, and installation on or in any government building of the eligible entity of onsite renewable energy technology that generates electricity from renewable resources
  14. Programs for financing energy efficiency, renewable energy, and zero-emission transportation (and associated infrastructure), capital investments, projects, and programs, which may include loan programs and performance contracting programs, for leveraging additional public and private sector funds, and programs that allow rebates, grants, or other incentives for the purchase and installation of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and zero-emission transportation (and associated infrastructure) measures

Build America, Buy America Waiver: On July 28, 2023, DOE released a General Applicability Public Interest Waiver for Build America, Buy America Act (BABA) equipment purchasing requirements. Now, eligible entities with EECBG Program formula allocations totaling $250,000 or less are exempt from BABA requirements.

Am I eligible?

Formula funding is designed to assist states, local governments, and Tribes. Once these entities receive grants, they may be used to assist residents, nonprofits, and businesses. See more below.

How can I access the money?

Formula grant applicants can apply for vouchers, including technical assistance vouchers, along with equipment rebates, and grants. Information about how to start the process can be found here.

DOE will announce EECBG Program Formula awards on a rolling basis. Formula grants already awarded are listed here and competitive grant awards here. They include the following NC and SC grants.

North Carolina

The state of NC received a formula grant of just under $3 million to establish a competitive sub-granting program for local governments to pursue energy efficiency retrofits and renewable energy installations in municipal facilities. Disadvantaged communities will be prioritized. 

Durham County received a 2023 competitive grant of $1.5 million to reduce energy burdens in low-income communities. Durham’s grant will fund the N.C. Energy Burden and Emissions Reduction Program, which will help low- and moderate-income households in Durham, Orange, and Granville counties make their homes more energy-efficient through upgrades such as air-sealing, duct sealing, insulation, and minor home repairs. The program should be open for applications by late 2024. Check back for updates. 

South Carolina

The Energy Office has received funding through the EECBG program to award subgrants to projects and programs that improve energy efficiency, cut carbon emissions, and reduce energy use. More information here.

What is the timeline?

Only formula grants are still open; the final deadline for competitive grants was August 21, 2023.

Local government formula grant applications are due by October 31, 2024. Tribal formula grant applications are due by May 31, 2025, but start early because the grant process requires submission of a pre-application information sheet, which should be submitted asap. More info here.

There are upcoming Tribal applicant office hours, which you can register for here.

What other incentives could I use to help me accomplish my goals?

States have received funding from the IIJA’s Energy Efficiency Revolving Loan Fund Capitalization Grant Program which they will use to provide loans and grants for energy efficiency audits, upgrades, and retrofits.

Check the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE) for additional incentives that may be offered by your state, local government, or utility, as well as important federal, state, and local policies. For questions regarding DSIRE, contact Justin Lindemann (NC Clean Energy Technology Center) at jplindem@ncsu.edu.

Where can I get more information?