Seed Grant Funding Available for Minnesota Clean Energy Projects

Do you and your community need funding to get a clean energy project off the ground? The Clean Energy Resource Teams (CERTs) can help!

CERTs seeks to provide Seed Grants to support for clean energy projects that spur community development in Minnesota. Clean energy projects include those related to energy conservation and efficiency, renewable energy, electric vehicles, and energy storage.  Priority will be given to proposals that provide forums for community education about the technologies and their economic, ecological, and community benefits.

“Since 2006, CERTs has awarded more than $1.3 million to over 393 projects,” said Lissa Pawlisch, Clean Energy Resource Teams Director. “Those projects ranged from energy efficiency for a food shelf and a library to solar curriculum and public EV chargers, and much more.”

Specific examples of projects from each region in previous rounds of Seed Grant awards:

  • Central: St. Cloud – Community Grassroots Solutions reached out to East African Community to share information about energy empowerment programs and how they can help with energy burden.
  • Metro: Minneapolis – MN Renewable Now kicked off their Solstar project aimed at installing solar on homes of 24 Northside residents who otherwise could not afford it
  • Northeast: Mountain Iron – The City produced a Renewable Mountain Iron report that provides building benchmarking, solar suitability, and solar PV designs and budgets for their facilities.
  • Northwest: Bemidji – Headwaters Science Center replaced outdated lighting in the building with energy efficient LEDs to inspire and educate others about energy efficiency.
  • Southeast: La Crescent – City of La Crescent installed two public level 2 electric vehicle charging stations near the city’s new event center and hotel
  • Southwest: Marshall – Marshall-Lyon County Library invested in much-needed energy efficiency measures that also enhance learning
  • West Central: Morris – University of Minnesota Morris, in partnership with the Institute on the Environment, developed a user-friendly energy storage guide for community-level sites.

CERTs offers many tools and resources to help you plan your project, so get started today! CERTs staff are happy to assist you throughout the process from talking through your project idea to getting that idea down on paper. Proposals must be submitted no later than 4:00pm on Friday, October 8th, 2021. Learn more and apply at

Funding for these projects is provided through the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources.

About CERTs: The Clean Energy Resource Teams are a statewide partnership with a shared mission to connect individuals and their communities to the resources they need to identify and implement community-based clean energy projects. CERTs partners include University of Minnesota Extension Regional Sustainable Development Partnerships, Great Plains Institute, Southwest Regional Development Commission, and the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources.