This is an excerpt from EERE Network News, a weekly electronic newsletter.

February 22, 2006

USDA Offers Grants and Loans for Efficiency, Renewable Energy

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced on February 13th the availability of $11.385 million in funding for competitive grants and $176.5 million for guaranteed loans to purchase renewable energy systems and make energy efficiency improvements. The funds are available for agricultural producers and rural small businesses under the USDA's Renewable Energy Systems and Energy Efficiency Improvements Program. For renewable energy systems, the minimum grant request is $2,500 and the maximum is $500,000. For energy efficiency improvements, the minimum acceptable grant request is $1,500 and the maximum is $250,000. Grant applications are due by May 12th, and loan applications are due by July 3rd. See the USDA press release and the program Web site, or go directly to the full announcement as published in the Federal Register.