What is the program?
What projects are eligible?
How do I apply?
|MEA will provide grants to get innovative clean energy projects deployed on our grid. For more information, read our Goals and Incentives.||Eligible projects include solar and non-solar technologies, and can be either installed clean energy technologies or feasibility studies. For more information, read our Project Requirements.||To apply, applicants will need to confirm that their project meets program requirements. Then, applicants will submit a written proposal that includes four sections. For details, read How to Apply.|
Goals and Incentives
To help achieve clean energy diversity, MEA promotes the transfer and commercialization of energy technology from private and public laboratories to products and services benefitting the citizens of the State.
Through these efforts, MEA is interested in supporting the deployment of "game changing" or innovative, early-commercialization stage energy generation (electric or thermal energy) technologies in actual installed projects. MEA's ultimate objectives are to mitigate the additional costs and risks of installing game changer technologies, evaluate the efficacy of those technologies through performance data collection and analysis, and to assess the cost/benefit ratios of those technologies through life cycle analyses.
A Game Changer competitive grant applicant may request a grant in an amount up to the difference in installed costs between “game changer” technologies or systems being proposed and conventional technologies or systems, evaluated through several factors determined by MEA.
Generally, Game Changer projects must have the potential to significantly advance the State’s clean energy market, through commercially available technologies in projects that are physically located in Maryland.
Representative projects and/or technologies may include any variety of clean energy resource conversion technologies, systems, or applications that are utilized in other states or parts of the world but that have not been introduced in Maryland. The technologies, systems, or applications must have the potential of significantly advancing the State’s clean energy generation market.
MEA expects Quarterly Progress Reports, one year of Annual Energy Performance Measurement Data, a Life Cycle Analysis based on costs and performance data from grant recipients, and a Final Report.
Grant proposals will not exceed 15 pages, and should provide relevant information for the following four sections:
- Grant Request
- Key Personnel and Corporate Qualifications
- Terms and Conditions
MEA will accept:
- Hard copy applications postmarked on/before Noon on Monday, January 13, 2014.
- Electronic applications emailed by Noon on Monday, January 13, 2014.
For more specific information about eligibility criteria, proposal requirements, and full details of the competitive grant, please download the Game Changer 2.0 Funding Opportunity Announcement that includes an outline by which to apply for the grants.
For general Game Changer Grant questions, email Doug Hinrichs, MEA Clean Energy Program Manager, at email@example.com.
Recent Game Changer Grant Awardees
MEA released the original funding opportunity announcement in June 2012 and received over 30 grant applications in response. In early 2013, MEA made four Game Changer 1.0 awards, namely to:
- TimberRock Energy Solutions, for Solar-Charged Electric Vehicles (EVs) at a General Motors Plant in White Marsh. This innovative configuration will allow a solar PV array, Lithium-ion batteries, and advanced inverters to channel energy to send solar electrons to EVs, the GM plant, or the power grid for Frequency Regulation ancillary services which could help pay for the batteries. This project will also be, perhaps, the world’s first real Vehicle-to-Grid analysis that uses four on-the-road electric vehicles made by a major auto manufacturer.
- Standard Solar, for the State’s First Solar Microgrid at a mixed-use property owned by Konterra, near Laurel. This project will involve an islandable microgrid at one Konterra property that will be energized by a solar PV array kept online by advanced energy storage system in the event of a conventional power grid outage. Most solar PV systems are knocked offline by a power grid outage since inverters require energy to convert PV power, in DC, to usable power, in AC. Several end-users could benefit from such a system, including first responders, the military, telecommunications, waste water treatment plants, and emergency shelters.
- Skyline Innovations, for Cost-effective Glazed Polymeric Solar Water Heating Systems. This innovative, low-cost technology will be installed at one Multi-family Housing application, then compared to the more conventional flat plate and evacuated tube technologies at two other Multi-family Housing applications.
- Land and Cultural Preservation Fund, for Community-scale Wind Project Assessment and Development across the State. This project will use LIDAR and SODAR wind resource assessment technologies to determine sites that show technically and economically feasible sites for community-scale wind around Maryland. The grant recipient will then help those communities bring their projects to market through targeted outreach and communications.
In June 2013, MEA made five Game Changer 1.5 awards, namely to:
- Allied Well Drillers Validating Large-Scale Residential Geothermal Heating & Cooling Leasing Opportunity at the Chesapeake Club, in North East. Allied Well Drillers will mitigate primary barriers to large-scale geothermal market development, mainly high first costs, through the loop leasing business model validation at an aggregated GHC project of 20 homes on the Eastern Shore.
- EnergyWise Partners Metering of 70 Commercial GHC Projects to Validate Leasing Model Across Maryland. EnergyWise Partners will collect actual system performance data from 70 metered GHC projects that will remove barriers to financing commercial geothermal projects by replacing expensive upfront analysis with appropriate and reliable financial risk forecasting. The MEA grant will go towards Btu meter installation and data analysis.
- Alice Ferguson Foundation Geothermal Heating & Cooling for the LIving Building Challenge at the Potomac Watershed Study Center at Hard Bargain Farm in Accokeek. The Alice Ferguson Foundation will utilize geothermal heating & cooling as a major contributor to LEED, Living Building Challenge, and Net Zero Energy Building energy sustainability frameworks. This project could lead to the validation for the Maryland to develop greenhouse gas reducing codes and standards that include geothermal heating & cooling. The grant will provide assistance with the design and engineering costs associated with holistic system design that will allow a set of buildings to generate more energy than it consumers on an annual basis.
- Kentlands Citizens Assembly Installation of a Standing Column of Water (SWC) Geothermal Heating & Cooling System at Kentlands Community Center in Gaithersburg. This Game Changer Grant will assist the growth of standing column water (SCW) systems that are up to 2 times more efficient than traditional closed loop wells, primarily because metal piping is used, rather than PVC plastic, as the heat transfer medium. This development could lead to the conversion of thousands of existing water wells to multi-purpose drinking/GHC wells across the region. The grant mitigates high upfront costs associated with uniqueness of this type of retrofit system.
- Maryland Hawk Corporation and Cambridge Environmental Technologies Greenhouse Installation of a Biomass Boiler/Organic Rankine Cycle Generator CHP System, at the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore Campus. This will establish the first biomass boiler/generator system of its kind that will heat a 3-acre greenhouse (1MMBTU/300kW) in the winter. The generation of electricity will be through an Organic Rankine Cycle (ORC) generator that will be added to a larger micro-grid to be developed in the next phase of the project. The grant will mitigate high upfront engineering costs associated with novel applications of proven biomass, environmental, and ORC technologies.