From our colleague Sarah Johnson Phillips:
Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) released a Notice of Funding Available (NOFA) for up to $3,000,000 in renewable energy feasibility study grants under the Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).
- The grants are available to farmers, ranchers, and rural small businesses for conducting feasibility studies for renewable energy systems.
- The maximum amount for a feasibility grant is $50,000 or 25 percent of the eligible project cost of the study (whichever is less). Eligible costs include, but are not limited to, resource assessment, transmission studies, and environmental studies.
- Applications are due to USDA Rural Development State Offices by October 5, 2010.
The REAP program also provides grants and loan guarantees to support renewable energy systems and energy efficiency improvements as well as energy audit and renewable energy development assistance grants. The REAP program is administered by the Rural Business-Cooperative Service
The full NOFA is available in today’s Federal Register (Federal Register, Vol. 75, No. 151, 47525-47535, August 6, 2010).
In an earlier blog, my colleagues, Debra Frimerman and Janet Jacobs reported about the Rural Energy for America Program (“REAP”), in general and specifically in regards to small wind projects. REAP is a Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) program that provides grants and loan guarantees to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to purchase renewable energy systems, make energy efficiency improvements and conduct feasibility studies for renewable energy systems. Eligible renewable energy systems include those that generate heat, electricity or fuels from wind, solar, biomass, geothermal, hydro power, and hydrogen based feed stocks.
The USDA has announced that it has awarded more than $13 million in REAP funds for 233 renewable energy projects in 38 states. Examples of the awards include a $1.8 million guaranteed loan and $500,000 grant for Milford Wind Energy, LLC; a $435,271 guaranteed loan and $435,271 grant for Unaka Forest Products, Inc.; and a $15,000 grant to Pacifica Marine, Inc.
For information on this and other USDA programs to finance renewable energy development, please refer to our earlier client alert regarding the Food Conservation and Energy Act (also known as the “2008 Farm Bill”) or visit the USDA’s 2008 Farm Bill website.
The USDA announced today that it is accepting applications under the Rural Energy for America Program (“REAP”). REAP provides grants and loan guarantees to agricultural producers and rural small businesses to purchase renewable energy systems, make energy efficiency improvements and conduct feasibility studies for renewable energy systems.
REAP funds are available in the following amounts:
- Grants for energy efficiency projects are available for up to the lesser of $250,000 or 25% of the project costs.
- Grants for renewable energy systems are available for up to the lesser of $500,000 or 25% of the project costs.
- Grants for feasibility studies for renewable energy systems are available for up to the lesser of $50,000 or 50% of the costs of the study.
- Loan guarantees are available for up to the lesser of $25 million or 75% of the project costs.
Applicants must be agricultural producers or rural small businesses. Agricultural producers are farmers or ranchers that obtain more than half of their gross income from agricultural operations. Small rural businesses are small businesses, as determined in accordance with the Small Business Administration's small business size standards, located in rural areas. Applications are due July 31, 2009.