Grants available for biomass energy on W.V. surfaced-mined land

By Erin Voegele | December 04, 2013

The West Virginia Brownfields Assistance Center at Marshall University has expanded its partnership with the West Virginia Division of Energy’s Office of Coalfield Community Development to explore the reuse and redevelopment potential of land that has been surface-mined. Biomass production is a possible application for this land.

As part of the initiative, The Division of Energy and Appalachian Regional Commission are provided $355,000 in funding for three new two-year project. One of those projects will include a grant program administered by the Brownfields Assistance Center to support renewable energy projects on surface-mined land. Grants of up to $40,000 each are available for biomass, wind or solar projects. However, average awarded amounts are expected to be in the $25,000 to $35,000 range.

According to the request for proposals, examples of biomass projects eligible for the grant program proposals include demonstration plantings of biomass crops, such as switchgrass, Arundo donax, miscanthus, seed crops, and trees.

According to information released on the program, each grant requires a 50 percent match. Funded project must be completed in a 12-month timeframe. Regardless of start date, all projects must be complete by July 31, 2015. Grant applications are due Jan. 15, 2014.

Eligible applicants include unites of local government, nonprofit organizations, quasi-government entities, government entities created by state legislature, regional council or a group of general purpose units of local government, redevelopment agencies charted or sanctioned by the state of West Virginia, West Virginia school systems or universities, public and private partnerships were the public entity is the grant applicant.

Additional information on the funding opportunity and application instructions are available here.