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BIL: Energy Improvement in Rural or Remote Areas Fixed Award Grant Program

Open Date:


Close Date:


Eligible Recipients:

  • Educational Institution
  • Incorporated Consortia
  • Local Government
  • Native/Tribal Entity
  • Non-profit
  • Private Sector
  • State Government
  • Unincorporated Consortia

Program Purpose:

  • Energy Infrastructure

Reserved for Energy


Upcoming Milestones:

Applicants must submit a Pre-Application by July 13, 2023 at 5:00 PM ET. Only successful pre-applicants will be invited to complete a more detailed full application.


Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED)

Funded by:

U.S. Department of Energy


The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA), commonly referred to as the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (BIL) authorizes DOE to invest $1 billion in energy improvements in rural or remote areas. DOE’s Energy Improvements in Rural or Remote Areas (ERA) Program is managed by the Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED). OCED will provide financial investment, technical assistance, and other resources to advance clean energy demonstrations and energy solutions that benefit rural and remote communities. ERA aims to fund clean energy projects with three specific goals:

1. Deliver measurable benefits to energy customers in rural or remote areas by funding replicable energy projects that lower energy costs, improve energy access and resilience, and/or reduce environmental harm;

2. Support new rural or remote energy system models using climate-resilient technologies, business structures that promote economic resilience, new financing mechanisms, and/or new community engagement practices; and

3. Build clean energy knowledge, capacity, and self-reliance in rural America.

This FOA provides $50 million in Federal funding and is designed to support small community-driven clean energy projects requiring $500,000 to $5 million in Federal funding. Other ERA funding opportunities include DE-FOA-0002970, titled Bipartisan Infrastructure Law: Energy Improvement in Rural or Remote Areas, which provides $5 million to $100 million in Federal funding to community- and large-scale demonstration projects that address region-specific energy challenges, and a $15 million Energizing Rural Communities Prize, which provides up to $300,000 cash prizes to assist development of partnerships and financing models to advance clean energy projects. This FOA utilizes a simplified application process and will award fixed-amount grants. This grant mechanism significantly reduces financial reporting requirements associated with larger DOE awards. Recipients are responsible for accomplishing their proposed work.

On May 11, 2023, the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations (OCED) issued $50 million in grant funding for the Energy Improvements in Rural or Remote Areas (ERA) Program to help deploy community-driven clean energy solutions in rural and remote areas across the country. This funding opportunity will award grants for projects with a dollar amount between $500,000 to $5 million and requires no cost-share from recipients to help ensure an equitable transition to a clean energy future.

The ERA Program aims to fund clean energy projects with at least one of the following resilient clean energy objectives:

  • Improving overall cost-effectiveness of energy generation, transmission, or distribution systems;
  • Siting or upgrading transmission and distribution lines;
  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions from energy generation in rural or remote areas;
  • Providing or modernizing electric generation facilities;
  • Developing microgrids; and,
  • Increasing energy efficiency.

This funding opportunity has one topic area:

  • Community-driven clean energy projects of at least $500,000 and at most $5 million, using one or more clean energy technologies that improve reliability and/or resilience of energy systems, reduce energy poverty, or improve environmental performance of energy generation in a rural or remote community.

Eligible applicants include institutions of higher education, for-profit and non-profit organizations, state, local governments, and Tribal Nations, incorporated and unincorporated consortia.

Technical assistance from DOE’s national laboratories is available for eligible applicants. Technical assistance is available for pre-application preparation through office hours and limited individual sessions. Information on technical assistance, including eligibility and how to apply for it, is available here.

Related Resources

Additional information is available on the Resources page.
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