Public Entities: $100,000
Non-Public Entities: $317,000
Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust
Varies depending on applicant type (public vs. non-public) and grant type (site assessment, feasibility study, onsite wind monitoring, acoustic studies, business planning, and development)
Through the Commonwealth Wind Incentive Program – Commercial Wind Initiative the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (MassCEC) offers site assessment grants of services, feasibility study grants, and development grants and loans for commercial wind projects 2 MW or greater that will serve the whole-sale energy markets or for projects that do not qualify for net metering but provide on-site use. MassCEC is the administrator of the Massachusetts Renewable Energy Trust (RET), the state's clean energy fund.
Projects must owned by commercial, industrial, or institutional (including not-for-profit or public) entities served by one of the investor-owned electric distribution utilities in Massachusetts -- Fitchburg Gas and Electric Light (Unitil), Massachusetts Electric (National Grid), Nantucket Electric (National Grid), NSTAR Electric, or Western Massachusetts Electric. In addition, customers of any Municipal Light Plant (MLP) Department that pays into the RET are eligible (see MassCEC's web site for additional information on which MLP's have joined the RET).
The site assessment grant is a grant of services. For public entities, there is no cost share. For non-public entities, the MassCEC requires a cost share of $1,500. The site assessment is intended to be the first step of many when planning a wind project. It is also required for additional MassCEC commercial wind grants. There is a specific framework determined for these services, with project timelines and responsibilities clearly defined. The entire site assessment process is designed to last 12 weeks.
The feasibility study grant analyzes all aspects of a project, including the technical, environmental, regulatory, and financial aspects. Public outreach and stakeholder engagement is required as part of the feasibility study. In addition, a detailed wind resource assessment is required and additional funding is available for that piece. Acoustic studies may qualify for additional funding and should follow MassCEC's Acoustic Methodology for Wind Projects. A public entity may apply for business planning grants, which take place after the feasibility study.
Finaly, development grants are now available for commercial wind projects. These grants may be used for activities such as permitting, evaluating environmental impacts, performing geotechnical or interconnection studies, and public outreach. Funding levels (with associated cost shares) are as follows:
- Feasibility Study, Public Entity: $50,000 maximum grant with 5% cost share.
- Feasibility Study, Non-Public Entity: $40,000 maximum grant with 20% cost share.
- Wind Monitoring Equipment Adder, Public Entity: $20,000, with 5% cost share.
- Wind Monitoring Equipment Adder, Non-Public Entity: $15,000 with 20% cost share.
- Acoustic Study Grant, Public Entity: $15,000 maximum grant and no cost share.
- Acoustic Study Grant, Non-Public Entity: $12,000 maximum grant with 20% cost share.
- Business Planning Adder, Public Entity only: $15,000 maximum grant with 5% cost share.
- Development Grant, Non-Public Entity only: $250,000 maximum grant with 40% cost share.
All applications must be submitted electronically. Interested applicants must review the full program documentation, solicitations and applications. This is only a brief overview.