OPPPORTUNITY: MN Dep of Commerce looking to work with or connect tribal communities

Here is a lot of information (via email) from Minnesota Department of Commerce | Energy Division…

The Minnesota Department of Commerce is seeking to work with and facilitate connections with local and Tribal governments, utilities, businesses, communities and other entities interested in energy-related partnerships. The opportunities outlined below are offered through federal funding opportunities, including those funded by the Infrastructure Investments and Jobs Act (IIJA) and the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA).

Recent and Expected Federal Funding Activity

The federal government issues a variety of announcements related to federal funding opportunities:  Requests for Information (RFI); Notices of Intent (NOI); and Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA). More information can be found on the Commerce Federal Funding Opportunities web page or by clicking the links below. In order to facilitate a quick review of this newsletter, the subject matter of included items is recapped here; full details can be found in the body of the newsletter.

  • Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA), Administrative and Legal Requirements Document (ALRD), and Requests for Applications (RFA)
    • DOE Announces $47 Million To Develop Affordable Clean Hydrogen Technologies
    • Onsight Energy Technical Assistance Partnerships
    • DOE Announces $25.5 Million to Improve Biofuels and Bioproducts
    • $74 Million to Advance Enhanced Geothermal Systems
  •  Notices of Intent (NOI)
    • Clean Energy Technology Deployment on Tribal Lands
    • IRA 60114 – Climate Pollution Production Grants
    • IIJA Carbon Capture Large-Scale Pilot Projects and Carbon Capture Demonstration Projects
    • Energy Improvements in Rural or Remote Areas Program
  • Requests For Information (RFI)
    • Draft Application Guidance for $553.6 Million Program to Ensure the Availability of Clean, Reliable Hydroelectric Generation Capacity
  •  Prizes
    • The Equitable and Affordable Solutions to Electrification (EAS-E) Home Electrification Prize
    • Community Power Accelerator Prize
    • Energy Class Prize
    • Energizing Rural Communities Prize
  • Webinars
    • Designed to Deliver: Lessons Learned from Architects, Engineers, and Contractors in Zero-Carbon Buildings
    • Industry-Perspective Webinar on IRA Tax Implications and Market Opportunities
    • Ecosystem Services of Solar-Pollinator Habitat Webinar
    • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Climate Planning
    • Innovative AgriSolar Design
  • Conferences
    • DOE’s 2023 Small Business Forum & Expo
    • 2023 National Energy Codes Conference
  • Guides
    • Farmers Guide to Going Solar
    • National Requirements for Zero Energy Ready Single-Family Homes
    • New Energy Justice Mapping Tool for Schools
  • Clean Energy Tax Credit Information
    • Heat Pumps Keep Homes Warm and Bills Low this Winter
    • Geothermal Heat Pumps Tax Credit|Energy Star
    • Solar Investment Tax Credit: What Changed?
    • Homeowner’s Guide to the Federal Tax Credit for Solar Photovoltaics
    • Zero Energy Ready Homes Are Coming to a Neighborhood Near You
    • Federal Solar Tax Credits for Businesses
    • Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency Residential Tax Credits
    • Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 – What it Means for You

— Non-IIJA Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA)

  • DOE Announces $47 Million To Develop Affordable Clean Hydrogen Technologies
    • Concept papers due: February 24, 2023
    • Full applications due: April 28, 2023.
    • DE-FOA-0002920

This funding opportunity, which is administered by DOE’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies Office, focuses on RD&D of key hydrogen delivery and storage technologies as well as affordable and durable fuel cell technologies. Fuel cell RD&D projects will focus particularly on applications for heavy-duty trucks, to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and eliminate tailpipe emissions that are harmful to local air quality.

  •  Onsight Energy Technical Assistance Partnerships
    • Information Webinar: 2/22/2023 – 12:00 PM CT Register here
    • Letter of Intent (optional) Deadline: 2/28/2023 – 4:00 PM CT
    • Full Application Deadline: 4/21/2023 – 4:00 PM CT
    • DE-FOA-0002945

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Industrial Efficiency and Decarbonization Office (IEDO) announced a $23 million funding opportunity that will establish a regional network of Technical Assistance Partnerships (TAPs) to help industrial facilities and other large energy users increase the adoption of onsite energy technologies. The Onsite Energy TAPs will accelerate the integration and deployment of clean energy technologies to drive U.S. industrial decarbonization, productivity, and competitiveness. This funding opportunity includes the following topic areas:Topic 1 – Regional Onsite TAPs: Funding for up to 10 entities to serve as regional Onsite Energy TAPs. Each TAP will represent a multi-state region and serve as the primary technical, market, and policy point of contact for end-users and other state and local stakeholders.Topic 2 – Onsite Energy Technical Analysis and Support Center: Funding for one national entity to serve as the Onsite Energy Technical Analysis and Support Center (TASC). The TASC will centrally coordinate technical analysis and programmatic activities of the Onsite Energy TAPs.

–IIJA Funding Opportunity Announcements (FOA)

  • DOE Announces $25.5 Million to Improve Biofuels and Bioproducts

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced $25.5 million in funding to enable the sustainable use of domestic biomass and waste resources, such as agricultural residues and algae, to produce low-carbon biofuels and bioproducts.The “Reducing Agricultural Carbon Intensity and Protecting Algal Crops” funding opportunity will improve the production of environmentally sustainable feedstocks for bioenergy through two topic areas:

  1. Climate-Smart Agricultural Practices for Low-Carbon Intensity Feedstocks, and
  2. Algae Crop Protection

Recognizing that decarbonizing transportation and agriculture are inherently linked when it comes to the thoughtful production and deployment of biofuels, this funding opportunity focuses on improving climate-smart agricultural practices that reduce the carbon intensity of biomass feedstocks used for biofuel production, and cultivating and protecting algae crops, an abundant and renewable biofuel source.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced a funding opportunity of up to $74 million for up to seven pilot projects that will test the efficacy and scalability of enhanced geothermal systems (EGS).  Through this investment, DOE hopes the research and development from the findings would demonstrate the growth and ultimate potential for geothermal energy to provide reliable, around-the-clock electricity to tens of millions of homes across the country. Applications for the BIL-funded EGS Pilot Demonstrations will be accepted over multiple rounds.

— IIJA Notice of Intent (NOI)

  • $2.5 Billion for Two Carbon Capture Programs
    • NOI
    • DOE plans to release both funding announcements in late February 2023

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED), in collaboration with the Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management (FECM), intends to provide up to $2.52 billion to fund two carbon capture programs needed to reduce carbon emissions from the electricity generation and industrial sectors. The Carbon Capture Large-Scale Pilots program will include $820 million for up to 10 projects focused on scaling transformational carbon capture technologies. The Carbon Capture Demonstration Projects program will include up to $1.7 billion for approximately six projects to demonstrate commercial-scale carbon capture technologies, pipeline transportation, and geologic storage infrastructure. The pilot program seeks to catalyze earlier stage technologies with great potential, while the demonstrations program will focus on technologies that will further commercialization.

— Non-IIJA Notice of Intent (NOI)

  • Clean Energy Technology Deployment on Tribal Lands – 2023

The DOE Office of Indian Energy plans to solicit applications from Indian Tribes, which include Alaska Native Regional Corporations and Village Corporations (hereafter referred collectively as “Indian Tribes”), Intertribal Organizations, and Tribal Energy Development Organizations to:

  1. Install clean energy generating system(s) and/or energy efficiency measure(s) for tribal building(s); or,
  2. Deploy community-scale clean energy generating system(s) or energy storage on tribal lands; or,
  3. Install integrated energy system(s) for autonomous operation (independent of the traditional centralized electric power grid) to power a single or multiple essential tribal buildings during emergency situations or for tribal community resilience; or,
  4. Power unelectrified tribal buildings.
  • IRA – 60114 – Climate Pollution Production Grants
    • IRA 60114 NOI
    • Planning Grants announcement anticipated for March 2023

The Climate Pollution Reduction Grants (CPRG) program will provide grants to states, territories, tribes, air pollution control agencies, and local governments to develop and implement plans for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and other harmful air pollution.  Section 60114 of the Inflation Reduction Act provides an investment of $5 billion to support efforts by states, territories, municipalities, tribes, and groups thereof to develop and implement strong, local greenhouse gas reduction strategies. This two-staged grant program provides funding of $250 million for planning grants, and $4.6 billion for implementation grants.

The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) intends to issue a funding opportunity in March 2023 for up to $300 million to improve the cost, reliability, environmental impact, and climate resilience of energy systems in rural or remote areas across the country with 10,000 or fewer inhabitants. To provide equal opportunity to qualified applicants from rural and remote areas across the United States, this FOA is organized into nine geographic regions to reflect regional diversity in energy consumption and access, varying weather patterns, and climate impacts.The anticipated funding opportunity announcement (FOA) for the Energy Improvements in Rural or Remote Areas (ERA) program aims to fund projects with the following three goals:

  1. Deliver measurable benefits to energy customers in rural or remote areas by funding energy projects that lower energy cost, improve energy resilience, and/or reduce environmental harm.
  2. Demonstrate new rural or remote energy system models using climate-resilient technologies, new business structures and workforce models, new financing mechanisms, and/or new community engagement best practices.
  3. Build clean energy knowledge, capacity, and self-reliance in rural America in order to enhance ease of replicability in similarly situated communities.

–IIJA Request for Information (RFI)

  • 40333 – Draft Application Guidance for $553.6 Million Program to Ensure the Availability of Clean, Reliable Hydroelectric Generation Capacity
    • Draft Application Guidance
      • A public webinar will be held on Thursday, February 16, 2023 that will provide the public with an opportunity to provide feedback. Registration is required. Additional feedback options are available.

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) issued draft application guidance for a hydroelectric incentive program focused on maintaining and enhancing hydroelectric facilities to ensure generators continue to provide clean electricity, while integrating renewable energy resources such as wind and solar, improving dam safety, and reducing environmental impacts. In releasing the draft guidance, DOE is requesting feedback from a wide range of stakeholders, including industry, clean-energy advocates, and local governments and communities on eligibility, application requirements, and timing of incentive payments. Leveraging operational flexibility and energy storage capabilities, hydropower supports energy resource adequacy to ensure the availability of clean, reliable generation capacity allowing all Americans access to clean, resilient, and affordable electricity.


  • The Equitable and Affordable Solutions to Electrification (EAS-E) Home Electrification Prize
    • More Information
    • Concept Paper – Phase 1 due: March 8, 2023
    • Pilot Demonstration – Phase 2 opens October 2023 – submissions due: April 2024

Provides up to $2.4 million in prizes for innovative solutions that advance electrification retrofits of residential homes across all building types and geographies.

  • DOE Launches $10 Million Prize to Accelerate Community Solar in Underrepresented Communities

DOE’s National Community Solar Partnership launched the Community Power Accelerator Prize, a $10 million competition that will bring together investors, nonprofits, developers, community-based organizations, and technical experts to work together to finance more equitable community solar projects. The competition will support developers with technical assistance, an online platform, and a Learning Lab to build a pipeline of credit-ready projects that will connect with investors seeking to fund community solar in disadvantaged communities.

The Energy Champions Leading the Advancement of Sustainable Schools (CLASS) Prize will provide training and cash prizes to school districts working to make energy management a sustainable feature of their communities. The Prize is designed to position Local Education Agencies (LEAs) to make meaningful infrastructure improvements that will reduce utility costs, improve indoor air quality, and improve learning environments long-term. A total of $4.5 million in awards is available, including $3.75 million in cash prizes for selected LEAs to fund energy management professionals-in-training, and an additional $750,000 in technical assistance from Energy CLASS Training Network partners.

The Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations is launching this $15 million to challenge individuals and organizations to develop partnership plans and innovative financing strategies to help rural or remote communities improve their energy systems and make progress on advancing clean energy demonstration projects.



  • Designed to Deliver: Lessons Learned from Architects, Engineers, and Contractors in Zero-Carbon Buildings

Architects, engineers, and contractors (A/E/C) are essential in designing and delivering buildings that offer top value to clients while meeting energy and carbon goals. This discussion will highlight the A/E/C and client barriers to routine design and delivery of zero-carbon buildings, in addition to resources developed by the Better Buildings Design and Construction Allies that address the challenges.

  • Industry-Perspective Webinar on IRA Tax Implications and Market Opportunities

The Business Council for Sustainable Energy, the Federal Performance Contracting Coalition, and the National Association of Energy Service Companies will host a free webinar exploring the Inflation Reduction Act’s tax implications and market opportunities for energy efficiency and sustainable energy projects. The panelists will also discuss tax opportunities and their structures, process and timing, and potential challenges.

  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Climate Planning

Climate change disproportionately impacts certain communities, that is why diversity, equity, and inclusion are crucial to consider when creating a climate action plan. Learn how Better Buildings partners ensure their actions respond to the needs of those most impacted by climate change and policy.

  • It’s Electric! Electrified Alternatives to Industrial Fossil Fuel Systems

Learn about the benefits and challenges in implementing electrified systems.

A roundtable discussion


  • DOE’s 2023 Small Business Forum & ExpoRegister Now!
    • Don’t miss your chance to gain exclusive access to:
    • Informative keynotes from top administration officials
    • Breakout sessions led by industry leaders and experts in the field
    • One-on-one matchmaking sessions
    • An exhibit hall showcasing the latest products and services for building your business and increasing revenue
    • Countless networking opportunities

Make plans now to join other business owners and government officials to learn how to increase revenue and grow your business. Register by April 30 to take advantage of early-bird savings!

  • 2023 National Energy Codes Conference
    • 2023 National Energy Codes Conference!
    • What: 2023 National Energy Codes Conference
    • When: May 2-4, 2023
    • Where: The Palmer House, Chicago, IL
    • Who: Builders, designers, code officials, policymakers, and code stakeholders of all types!

After three years in a virtual setting, this year’s event will be held in-person in Chicago, Illinois.  With new energy code funding opportunities emerging from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act there will be no shortage of timely discussions, engaging topics, and networking opportunities.


  • The Updated Farmer’s Guide to Going Solar – a resource for farms and agricultural businesses looking to solar power their daily operations and diversify their revenue stream. Updated Farmer’s Guide to Going Solar
  • New National Requirements for Zero Energy Ready Single-Family Homes – DOE’s Zero Energy Ready Home (ZERH) program in EERE’s Building Technologies Office (BTO) has released Version 2 of its national program requirements for single-family homes (ZERH V2), the most significant overhaul of DOE’s energy and environmental performance benchmarks in history. The over 12,000 zero-energy certified homes across the country are so energy efficient—often 40 to 50% more than a typical new home—they consistently offset most or all the energy they consume with renewable power. Video: What is a Zero Energy Ready Home?
  • New Energy Justice Mapping Tool for Schools – This new tool is intended to allow users to explore and produce reports for a specific school facility which include but are not limited to the following metrics: whether the school is located in a Disadvantaged Community (DAC); whether it is in a rural location (coded as 41, 42, 43); whether it is designated as a community shelter; the percentage of students who are eligible to receive free and reduced priced meals; and whether the school qualifies for Title I schoolwide programming.  Energy Justice Mapping Tool for Schools

–Clean Energy Tax Credit Information Resources

As of January 1, 2023, households buying an electric heat pump and other high efficiency equipment can claim a 30% federal tax credit of up to $2,000. In addition to federal tax credits, this guide summarizes other new programs that will make heat pumps even more affordable and accessible to consumers.

As of January 1, 2023, households buying a geothermal heat pump can claim a federal tax credit of up to 30%.

The Inflation Reduction Act expanded the Federal Tax Credit for Solar Photovoltaics through a provision known as the Investment Tax Credit. Learn about the biggest changes and what they mean for Americans who install rooftop solar.

This guide provides an overview of the federal investment tax credit for those interested in residential solar photovoltaics.

Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary Alejandro Moreno discusses new efforts to help subsidize construction of Zero Energy Ready Homes.

Read about two solar tax credits available for businesses and other entities, such as nonprofits and local and tribal governments, that purchase solar energy systems.

Search for incentives by geography, technology, eligible sector, program type, and more.

–Federal Tax Credits Under the Inflation Reduction Act

The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 created and updated several energy-related tax credits and deductions that may affect federal tax returns for individuals and businesses. For details — including tax credits for clean vehicles, energy efficiency, and other provisions — see Credits and Deductions Under the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 on the IRS website.

–For Stakeholders Planning on Applying Directly to the U.S. Government for Funding

NOTE: Due to the high demand of UEI requests and SAM registrations, entity legal business name and address validations are taking longer than expected to process. Entities should start the UEI and SAM registration/update process immediately as the processing time to complete a registration/update currently may take weeks to months. This includes address and expired registration updates. If entities have technical difficulties with the UEI validation or SAM registration process they should utilize the HELP feature on SAM.gov. SAM.gov will work entity service tickets in the order in which they are received and asks that entities not create multiple service tickets for the same request or technical issue. Additional entity validation resources can be found here: GSAFSD Tier 0 Knowledge Base – Validating your Entity.

The MN Commerce Department is your partner for federal energy-specific funding opportunities

Interested in partnering with the Department of Commerce around funding opportunities? Have questions? Send an email, detailing the program, your organization and contact information to IIJA Initiatives Project Manager, Kellye Rose: fedquestions.commerce@state.mn.us.Sign up for future email updates from the Department of Commerce.
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This entry was posted in Funding, MN, Opportunities, Policy and tagged by Ann Treacy. Bookmark the permalink.

About Ann Treacy

Librarian who follows rural broadband in MN and good uses of new technology (blandinonbroadband.org), hosts a radio show on MN music (mostlyminnesota.com), supports people experiencing homelessness in Minnesota (elimstrongtowershelters.org) and helps with social justice issues through Women’s March MN.

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