If you’re ready to invest in greenhouse energy-efficient upgrades but aren’t sure how to finance them, there are a number of resources that can help.
1. Utility Company Rebates
Rebates on new equipment or upgrades that increase energy efficiency are available through many utilities companies. A database of incentives by state for renewables and efficiency can be found at www.dsireusa.org.
2. REAP (Rural Energy for America Program) Energy Audits And Renewables Development
This program provides grants for energy audits and renewable energy development assistance. Grants are competitive, but recipients can be awarded up to $100,000. Energy audit recipients must pay a minimum of 25 percent of the audit costs, which vary depending on the complexity of the audit and time spent conducting it.
3. REAP Renewable Energy Systems/Energy Efficiency Improvement Program
This program, also competitive, provides up to $500,000 for installation of renewable energy systems and other energy efficiency improvements.
4. REAP Guaranteed Loan Program
This program encourages commercial financing of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. It teams project developers with local lenders, who then can apply for a loan guarantee up to 85 percent of the loan amount from USDA Rural Development. More information on the REAP programs is available at www.rurdev.usda.gov.
Source: The University of New Hampshire Cooperative Extension: Energy Audits. Reprinted with permission from Delta T Solutions Hot Topics, http://bit.ly/1mIbumA.