A mix of projects are funded by the Clean Energy grants. The funds support the development, demonstration and deployment of clean energy technology. They provide benefits to the state by saving energy, reducing energy costs and harmful air emissions and increase energy independence for our state. Investments of the funds help develop new businesses and jobs, which help communities across the state.

Solar panels and wind turbines with city

On January 19, 2018, the Governor signed the capital budget bill. This includes funding for the Clean Energy Funds 3 (CEF3) program. This program started in 2013 and was invested in again in 2016 and this year.

We are currently working on program development for the new round of Clean Energy Funds. We will post information on this page for the open application periods for each program.

Highlights for the Clean Energy Funds 3 programs

Grid Modernization Program

– $11 million

This program is for public and private electrical utilities serving Washington customers. Utilities can partner with other public and private sector research organizations and businesses to apply for funding on projects that:

  • Advance clean and renewable energy technologies
  • Improve transmission and distribution control systems
  • Support integration of renewable energy sources
  • Use distributed energy resources and sustainable microgrids
  • Increase utility customer options for energy sources, energy efficiency, energy equipment and utility services. 

Open application announcement is anticipated in summer 2018.

Electrification of Transportation Program

– $11 million

This program will offer funding for Washington state local governments and public or private electrical utilities.

They can partner with other public and private sector research organizations and businesses to transform our transportation systems. 

Open application announcement is anticipated in late 2018.

Research, Development and Demonstration Program

 – $7.85 million

This program is to provide match for federal and non-state funds for strategic research and development projects on new and emerging technologies.

Project focus areas may include, but are not limited to:

  • solar technology
  • advance bioenergy and biofuels
  • development of new earth abundant or lightweight materials
  • advance energy storage
  • battery component recycling
  • new renewable energy technology
  • new energy efficiency technologies. 

Open application announcement is anticipated in summer 2018.

Solar Program

– $4 million

This program in the CEF portfolio is focused on the deployment of solar projects in Washington State. 

Based on legislation, priority will be given to distribution projects that reduce peak demand and are capable of generating at least 500 kilowatts of direct current.

Open application announcement is anticipated late 2018.

Previously Awarded Clean Energy Funds Programs

Grants to Nonprofit Lenders

Revolving Loan Fund grants are showing that a modest public investment can promote private investment. This drives economic activity and jobs for Washingtonians and helps our state lead the nation in energy efficiency.

Our nonprofit partners Craft3, Puget Sound Cooperative Credit Union and the Housing Finance Commission offer revolving loans that provide loans for homeowners and commercial building owners who want to install renewable energy systems and efficiency upgrades.

Grants for Research and Development

These funds help Washington state clean energy technology research, development and demonstration projects bring in new grant money from the U.S. Department of Energy and other non-state sources. 

Current investments include recycling scrap carbon fiber from aerospace manufacturing, ocean energy research equipment and demand-response power systems on university campuses.

The RD&D program is not open for applications at this time.

Grants to Electric Utilities

Demonstration of energy storage and control technologies position Washington State companies as leaders in grid modernization, an important emerging worldwide market sector. 

Since 2013, the state has invested $14.3 million in smart grid projects that represent more than $35 million in total investment by our state’s largest electric utilities.

Soon we’ll push further on distributed power, with new advances in technology, resiliency and reliability. We are at the front of entirely new systems and business models for delivering electricity.

Watch a video on PSE’s Glacier battery storage project.

Renewable Energy Manufacturing

This program in the Clean Energy Fund is a combination of financing targeting advanced solar and renewable energy manufacturing facilities in Washington State.

Commerce is partnered with the Washington Economic Development Finance Authority (WEDFA).

Economic Development Bonds, issued and sold by WEDFA, are financed with loans made by private lenders to the owners of the facilities financed with the bonds. . Only projects approved by WEDFA for these bonds are eligible for the interest rate reimbursement.

Learn more about renewable energy manufacturing.