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The U.S. Department of Energy and the North Carolina Clean Energy Technology Center are excited to announce that a new, modernized DSIRE is under construction. The new version of DSIRE will offer significant improvements over the current version, including expanded data accessibility and an array of new tools for site users. The new DSIRE site will be available in December 2014. Staff are currently working hard on the new version of DSIRE but are also maintaining the content of the current version of DSIRE. Thank you for your continued support and patience during this transition. We hope you are as excited for December as we are!

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Incentives/Policies for Renewables & Efficiency

Printable Version
Energy Efficiency Financing for Public Sector Projects   

Last DSIRE Review: 11/06/2014
Program Overview:
State: California
Incentive Type: State Loan Program
Eligible Efficiency Technologies: Lighting, Lighting Controls/Sensors, Chillers , Furnaces , Boilers, Heat pumps, Central Air conditioners, CHP/Cogeneration, Energy Mgmt. Systems/Building Controls, Building Insulation, Motors, Custom/Others pending approval, Heating and air conditioning modifications
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies: Photovoltaics, CHP/Cogeneration, Other Distributed Generation Technologies
Applicable Sectors: Schools, Local Government, Institutional
Maximum Incentive:$3 million
Terms:0% - 1% interest rate
Loans must be repaid from energy cost savings within 15 years, including principal and interest
Program Budget:Over $20 million
Web Site:

Cities, counties, public care institutions, public hospitals, public schools and colleges, and special districts in California can apply for low-interest loans from the California Energy Commission for energy efficiency projects in their buildings and facilities. Residential and commercial projects and non-profit institutions are not eligible for these funds.

Entities eligible for 0% loans include:

  • School districts
  • Charter schools
  • County office of educations
  • State special schools
  • Community college districts

Entities eligible for 1% loans include:

  • Cities
  • Counties
  • Special Districts
  • Public College or University (except community colleges)
  • Public Care Institutions/ Public Hospitals

There is no minimum loan amount, but the maximum loan amount per application is $3 million. The loan term cannot exceed the useful life of loan-funded equipment, and will be determined on a case-by-case basis based on the estimated annual energy cost savings from the projects. The exact loan term will be determined such that the energy savings will cover the loan payments.

For a project to be considered, it must have proven energy savings and meet the eligibility requirements of the loan program. Examples of projects include:

  • Lighting systems
  • Pumps and motors
  • Streetlights and LED traffic signals
  • Energy management systems and equipment controls
  • Building insulation
  • Energy generation including renewable energy and combined heat and power projects
  • Heating, ventilation and air conditioning equipment
  • Waste water treatment equipment
  • Load shifting projects, including thermal energy storage

Full details and application packets are available at the web site above.

  Special Projects Office
California Energy Commission
Phone: (916) 654-4104
NCSU - home
Disclaimer: The information presented on the DSIRE web site provides an unofficial overview of financial incentives and other policies. It does not constitute professional tax advice or other professional financial guidance, and it should not be used as the only source of information when making purchasing decisions, investment decisions or tax decisions, or when executing other binding agreements. Please refer to the individual contact provided below each summary to verify that a specific financial incentive or other policy applies to your project.

While the DSIRE staff strives to provide the best information possible, the DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. make no representations or warranties, either express or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability or suitability of the information. The DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. disclaim all liability of any kind arising out of your use or misuse of the information contained or referenced on DSIRE Web pages.

Copyright 2014 - 2015 North Carolina State University, under NREL Subcontract No. XEU-0-99515-01. Permission granted only for personal or educational use, or for use by or on behalf of the U.S. government. North Carolina State University prohibits the unauthorized display, reproduction, sale, and/or distribution of all or portions of the content of the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) without prior, written consent.