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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

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Renewable Energy Competitive Incentive Program   

Last DSIRE Review: 09/09/2014
Program Overview:
State: Wisconsin
Incentive Type: State Grant Program
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies: Solar Water Heat, Solar Thermal Electric, Photovoltaics, Landfill Gas, Wind, Biomass, Geothermal Electric, Geothermal Heat Pumps, Municipal Solid Waste, Anaerobic Digestion
Applicable Sectors: Commercial, Industrial, Nonprofit, Schools, Local Government, State Government, Fed. Government, Agricultural, Institutional
Amount:10-40% of eligible project costs
Minimum award of $5,000
Maximum Incentive:2013 RFP
Biomass: $500,000
Biogas: $500,000
Geothermal Technologies: $200,000
Solar PV: $100,000
Solar Thermal: $100,000
Wind: $100,000
All technologies: 50% of total project costs.
Equipment Requirements:Cannot exceed 125% of the kWh or Therms consumed by the customer in a given year (except farm biogas projects)
Installation Requirements:Must be installed at a site serviced by a participating utility
Funding Source:Focus On Energy Program
Program Budget:$9 million (2013); $1.5 million (2012)
Web Site:

Note: See the program web site for information regarding future solicitations.

Wisconsin Focus on Energy offers a competitive grant to support the deployment of large renewable energy projects. Grant recipients and projects must be located in a participating electric or gas utility's service territory. The program web site above contains an interactive tool to assist people in determining their eligibility for different programs.

2014 Program Year

The program did not have a budget for 2014. However, the grant amount increased from 40% - 50% of total project costs. Maximum incentive amounts for eligible technologies remains the same. See the program website for information on grant recipients this year. 

2013 Program Year

Eligible technologies for the 2013 grants include biomass, biogas, geothermal, solar photovoltaics, solar thermal, and wind technologies. Grants are available for between 10% and 40% of eligible projects costs, with a minimum award of $5,000. Required payback periods and grant maximums vary by technology and are outlined below. Focus on Energy has allocated $9 million for the competitive grant program for 2013, with 75% reserved for Group One technologies (biogas, biomass, and geothermal) and 25% reserved for Group Two (solar PV, solar thermal, and wind).

Technology Grant Maximum Maximum Project Cost Minimum Payback Period (Before Grant) Maximum Payback Period (Before Grant)
Biogas, Biomass $500,000 $5,000,000 1.5 Years 10 Years
Geothermal $200,000 $1,000,000 1.5 Years 10 Years
Solar PV, Solar Thermal $100,000 $1,000,000 1.5 Years 25 Years
Wind $100,000 $1,000,000 1.5 Years 25 Years


In order to be eligible, the business must be a customer of a participating electric and natural gas provider. Incentive funds may not be used for the purchase of land, buildings, or other real property, internal personnel and labor expenses, feasibility studies and planning efforts, leasing equipment, equipment purchased prior to the award, or down payments or purchase orders made prior to the award.

In order to meet efficiency and effectiveness standards set out in legislation, Focus on Energy has set out specific technology requirements for the 2013 program year. Biogas projects are required to install a meter in order to measure the quantity of gas produced and used, and are also encouraged to use a biogas cleaning system. Biomass projects must provide a detailed plan for tracking renewable fuel inputs in the system, and may only be fueled with renewable fuels. Geothermal, solar PV, solar thermal, and wind projects must complete energy efficiency projects, or plan to complete such projects. Any new construction project must provide further evidence of energy efficiency efforts.

2012 Program Year

$1,500,000 was available for the 2012 program year, with $750,000 allocated for biogas, biomass and geothermal, and $750,000 allocated for solar photovoltaic, solar thermal and wind. Eligible technologies can receive between $25,000 and $250,000 per project. Funds cannot be used for the purchase of real property (land or buildings), internal personnel, labor expenses, feasibility studies, planning efforts, and leasing equipment. All equipment must be new, purchased after the date of the award, and must installed at a facility served by a participating utility. Applications were due August 29, 2012.

  Focus On Energy - Renewable Energy Program
1 S Pinckney
Suite 340
Madison, WI 53703
Phone: (800) 762-7077
Web Site:
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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.