Commercial and Industrial Grant Program
Grants to Maryland Nonprofits and For-Profits
to Retrofit Buildings for Energy Efficiency
to Retrofit Buildings for Energy Efficiency
Maryland Energy Administration
11/14/17 5:00 PM
Grants starting at $20,000 to Maryland nonprofit and for-profit organizations to improve the energy efficiency of their facilities. Projects must result in at least 15% reduced energy consumption in the building or treated space. All projects must include a minimum of two energy efficiency measures.
Project Eligibility Requirements:
-Projects eligible for grant consideration must be cost-effective. The aggregate total simple payback of the entire project before the deduction of all available rebates, incentives, grants, and other sources of leveraged funding must not exceed 10 years.
-The building(s) or treated space(s) that the Applicant organization proposes to upgrade must be located within the State of Maryland.
-The proposed project must include at least two (2) energy efficiency measures. Lighting and controls will be considered one measure under the FY18 C&I Program.
Applications will be accepted by MEA and each will be assigned to its respective electricity savings tier. Applications will be reviewed within each tier and will be ranked based on the quality of the following requirements.
Eligible projects must reduce aggregate annual electricity consumption as follows:
-For projects with one project site, aggregate annual electricity consumption for a whole building or treated space within a building by 15.0% - 20.0% to qualify for the Tier 1 incentive, by 20.1% - 25.0% to qualify for the Tier 2 incentive, and by 25.1% or more to qualify for the Tier 3 incentive.
-For projects with multiple sites, aggregate annual electricity consumption for the project as a whole must be reduced by 15.0% - 20.0% to qualify for the Tier 1 incentive, by 20.1% - 25.0% to qualify for the Tier 2 incentive, and by 25.1% or more to qualify for the Tier 3 incentive. However, electricity reduction for each site must be at least 15.0% of the site’s baseline consumption.
An ideal project will target an entire building that does not share walls, doors, systems, or a roof with other buildings. However, certain treated spaces that are not free-standing are also eligible for consideration under the FY18 C&I Program. To be eligible, such a space must be on its own electricity meter or must have a discrete purpose that distinguishes it from the rest of the building (e.g. office space, retail store, etc.).
For facilities with annual electricity consumption heavily weighted to manufacturing and process loads, MEA may consider a modified definition of treated spaces that isolates discrete manufacturing or other functions. In order to be considered, the project must involve a manufacturing facility involving industries such as plastics and packaging, chemicals, petrochemicals, metals, paper and pulp, transportation, biotechnology, pharmaceutical, food and beverage, mining and mineral processing, general manufacturing, or equipment manufacturing.
Building systems consisting of centralized energy-consuming equipment with points-of-use spread throughout the facility must achieve 15% or more electricity reduction for the entire building or treated space. For example, if a chilled water system resides in a utility room and the chilled water is distributed through an entire building, the 15% electricity reduction must be achieved for the entire building/treated space, not just the utility room where the chilled water system resides.
Deep Retrofit Approach:
The C&I Program requires proposed projects to employ at least two (2) energy efficiency measures that reduce aggregate annual electricity consumption by at least 15%. Projects that implement a diverse set of measures to generate a well-rounded portfolio of savings while remaining cost effective before the deduction of available incentives, grants, and other leveraged funding sources will be given preference. An ideal project will derive no more than 70% of the total project cost from a single measure. Some possible measures that could be implemented are included but not limited to those listed below:
-Building insulation and envelope improvements
-Lighting and Controls*
-Motors and variable frequency drives (VFDs)
-Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) upgrades
-Retro-commissioning or recommissioning
-Energy data analytics and operational changes to improve energy efficiency
*Lighting paired with controls will be considered one measure under the FY18 C&I Program.
Specifications for individual electricity efficiency measures must exceed the minimum energy code requirements. See the MEA guidance on Maryland’s energy code requirements. The proposed equipment must not only meet Maryland's energy code requirements but also the minimum efficiency requirements and standards set by the local utility's rebate program. Fluorescent lighting must be listed on the Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE) product list or must meet CEE standards. LED replacements must be listed on the Design Lights Consortium or ENERGY STAR Qualified Products list. HVAC equipment must meet or exceed the minimum SEER/EER/IEER outlined by your local utility's rebate program and/or comply with the current IECC code.
MEA recognizes that improved system operations can be helpful in achieving energy saving targets. While applications that include operational components as well as traditional technology upgrades are welcome, Applicants should be aware that electricity savings from operational changes may be more difficult to quantify than savings from technology upgrades. The burden of proof for the percentage of electricity savings achieved by operational changes rests with the Applicant. MEA strongly encourages Applicants to provide credible, third-party analysis or documentation to validate estimates of energy savings attributed to operational changes.
Projects eligible for grant consideration must be cost-effective. The aggregate total simple payback of the entire project before the deduction of all available rebates, incentives, grants, and other sources of leveraged funding must not exceed 10 years. A project’s simple payback is defined as the gross total cost divided by the annual cost savings generated by the energy efficiency measures.
While a standalone measure may have a high simple payback, the addition of other low-cost efficiency measures will improve the entire project’s simple payback. MEA is concerned only with the entire project’s aggregate payback, rather than the payback of each individual measure.
Eligible projects must cost at least $20,000 before the deduction of leveraged funds (rebates, incentives, etc.).
Award amounts will be calculated at rates based upon three (3) tiers of electricity savings:
-Tier 1 – 15% - 20% Total Project Electricity Savings: Up to 30% of net total project cost (after the deduction of incentives, rebates, and other leveraged funds), or $125,000, whichever is lower
-Tier 2 – 20.1% - 25% Total Project Electricity Savings: Up to 40% of net total project cost (after the deduction of incentives, rebates, and other leveraged funds), or $150,000, whichever is lower
-Tier 3 – 25.1%+ Total Project Electricity Savings: Up to 50% of net total project cost (after the deduction of incentives, rebates, and other leveraged funds), or $175,000, whichever is lower
Grantees may commence work after grant agreements are executed (February 2018).
Projects must be completed no later than February 1, 2019.
In order to qualify for consideration under the C&I Program, Applicants must meet the following eligibility requirements:
-The Applicant organization must be a Maryland commercial, industrial, or nonprofit enterprise. Facilities that are publicly owned or owned by a municipality do not qualify for the C&I Program, but may qualify for funding under the Maryland Smart Energy Communities Program. Data centers do not qualify for the C&I Program but may qualify for funding under the Data Center Energy Efficiency Program. Agricultural entities are welcome to apply to the C&I Program but are encouraged to first explore the Kathleen A.P. Mathias Agriculture Energy Efficiency Program.
-The Applicant organization must be in good standing with the Maryland State Department of Assessments and Taxation (“SDAT”).
-Measures that aim to reduce electricity consumption by solely switching to another fuel source are not eligible for grant funding.
-Renewable energy measures are not eligible for grant funding.
-Applicant organizations whose projects propose upgrades to buildings or treated spaces within buildings that are located in one of Maryland’s five EmPOWER utility service territories must apply to the EmPOWER Incentive programs offered to commercial and industrial entities by their respective utility providers.
-Project sites that are located outside of these service territories may still qualify for funding consideration under the C&I Program.
Restrictions and Limitations:
-Any project on which construction commences or equipment is purchased prior to the effective date of the Grant Agreement will be ineligible for grant funding. This includes the purchase, ordering, or installation of equipment.
-Before a Grant Agreement may be executed, selected projects must first be reviewed by the Maryland Historical Trust (“MHT”) or MEA’s designated Historic Preservation Specialist to ensure that no historical property will be adversely impacted by the installation of the proposed measures.
-Projects that reduce electricity use by solely switching to another fuel source are not eligible for grant funding.
-Renewable energy measures are not eligible for funding under the C&I Program.
-The Grantee organization owner or an authorized signatory for the parent company must sign the application and is responsible for submitting all program invoices and reporting documents.
MEA held an informational webinar for potential Applicants to go over C&I Program requirements, how to apply, what makes a good project proposal, and the anticipated timeline for Grant selection on Wednesday, September 27, 2017 from 2:00 PM - 3:30 PM. You can download a copy of the webinar presentation slides below.
Applicants are encouraged to secure additional sources of leveraged funding, such as loans, other grants, etc. While not a requirement of the C&I Program, the more sources of leveraged funds, the more favorable the application.
Applications are due by 5:00 PM on Tuesday, November 14, 2017. Grants will be awarded on a competitive basis and Grantees will be announced in January 2018.
-September 2017: FY18 C&I Program opens for applications
-November 14, 2017: Applications are due to MEA by 5:00 PM
-January 2018: Grant decisions are announced
-February 2018: Grant Agreements are executed (Grantees may commence work)
-February 1, 2019: All measures must be installed
-March 1, 2019: Final invoices are due to MEA
Selected projects must enter into a Grant Agreement with MEA no later than March 1, 2018 in order to receive a grant award.
Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.
Brandon Bowser, C&I Program Manager
Maryland Energy Administration
Attn: C&I Grant Program – Application
1800 Washington Blvd. Suite 755
Baltimore, MD 21230
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