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$20B in clean energy financing awaits Michigan lenders

U.S. EPA announces support through Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund; Michigan applicants and lenders eligible for financing and technical assistance
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Newly announced awards of Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) dollars in two national programs mark a significant step toward channeling millions of dollars in clean energy financing to households, small businesses, nonprofits, and other organizations in Michigan.

This funding will provide Michigan lenders the opportunity to expand green lending product offerings and increase their impact in our communities.

“This is a chance for eligible lenders and financial institutions to expand their commitment to the communities they serve by leveraging financing opportunities for clean energy and climate solutions,” said Anita Fox, director of the Michigan Department of Insurance and Financial Services (DIFS).

“As part of this network, lenders in Michigan will help to mobilize private capital for projects that will reduce pollution while also reducing energy costs, improving public health, and creating good-paying clean energy jobs in communities across the state.”

“The EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund announcements offer incredible opportunities for Michiganders to pursue clean energy upgrades for their homes, schools, businesses, particularly in low-income communities,” said EGLE director Phil Roos.

“This innovative funding directly supports Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s MI Healthy Climate Plan goals and our efforts to protect our world-class natural resources, lower costs for residents, and support good-paying clean energy jobs. EGLE looks forward to working with the awardees and applicants in bringing more climate funding home to Michigan.”

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced the recipients of the National Clean Investment Fund (NCIF) and Clean Communities Investment Accelerator (CCIA) awards. Together, the programs represent $20 billion in awards nationwide and comprise the bulk of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF), a historic $27 billion investment within the federal Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 to lower costs and expand economic opportunity while combating climate change, advancing environmental justice, and accelerating the deployment of clean energy resources. 

The NCIF, often referred to as a national green bank, finances clean energy and energy efficiency projects, ensuring that at least 40% of the benefits reach underserved communities in line with the federal Justice40 initiative. Receiving awards through the NCIF are three nonprofits: the Climate United Fund ($6.97 billion), Coalition for Green Capital ($5 billion) with Michigan Saves – the nation’s first nonprofit green bank – as a sub-awardee, and Power Forward Communities ($2 billion).

The CCIA provides technical assistance and capital to enhance green financing products and capabilities within community lending organizations, including Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs and Native CDFIs), credit unions, port authorities, housing finance agencies, minority depository institutions, and other nonprofit organizations that serve low- and moderate-income communities. Five nonprofits will receive awards through the CCIA: the Opportunity Finance Network ($2.29 billion), Inclusiv ($1.87 billion), the Justice Climate Fund ($940 million), Appalachian Community Capital ($500 million), and the Native CDFI Network ($400 million).

"President Biden's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund will make transformative investments in clean energy infrastructure, giving people access to cleaner, less expensive, and more reliable power and creating economic opportunity across the state," said Zachary Kolodin, chief infrastructure officer and director of the Michigan Infrastructure Office.

"These investments open up access to clean energy investments – enabling everyday Michiganders, communities, and businesses to take advantage of some of the hundreds of millions in Inflation Reduction Act dollars to save money on their energy bills, make home energy upgrades like rooftop solar and backup batteries, and more."

If leveraged effectively, the NCIF and CCIA will increase capacity within Michigan’s financing sector while bolstering the deployment of clean energy technologies, including rooftop solar, energy storage, electric vehicle charging infrastructure, and all-electric building products in communities across the state.

More information will become available when the EPA disburses funding to awardees in July.

For more information about the MI Healthy Climate Plan (MHCP) and the state’s work implementing the MHCP including opportunities to learn more about funding, programs, and other opportunities within the IRA, please visit the MI Healthy Climate Plan webpage or contact the OCE at [email protected].