The Energy Innovation Program (EIP) is part of the Government of Canada’s bid to support clean energy and efficient energy usage. The intended outcome of the EIP is to promote sustainable economic growth and Canada’s transition toward a low-carbon economy. Proposals are currently being requested for strategic priority areas such as: renewable, smart grid and storage systems; reducing diesel use by industrial operators in remote communities; improving industrial efficiency; addressing methane and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) through research and development; reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the building sector; and carbon capture, use, and storage. If your firm specializes in one of these areas, this grant may be exactly what you have been looking for. Be aware that the deadline for applications is October 30, 2016.

Who can use The Energy Innovation Program?

To be eligible for the Energy Innovation Program your project must be located in Canada and your small business must be incorporated or registered in Canada. Eligible applicants include entities such as a company, electricity and gas utility, standards organization, research association, industry association, aboriginal and community group, Canadian academic institution, and provincial, territorial, regional and municipal governments and their departments and agencies. As you can see, the Energy Innovation Program accepts a long list of businesses and organizations as potential grant candidates.

How much is on the table?

This depends on the type of project your firm is submitting for proposal. If you offer a Demonstration Project or Front End Engineering Design Study (FEED) the Energy Innovation Program may cover up to 50% of total eligible project costs per project. Your business could receive up to a maximum of $5 M.  The minimum funding that may be requested is $300,000 per project. If your business is submitting a Research and Development Project for proposal, the Energy Innovation Program may cover up to 75% of total eligible project costs per project. Your small business could receive a grant of up to a maximum of $5 M. Again, the minimum funding that may be requested is $300,000 per project. For all projects, the total Canadian government assistance (federal, provincial/territorial, regional and municipal governments) cannot exceed 75% of total project costs, with the except of applicants that are also Canadian Government Organizations. That means there is a lot of money on the table for your company to take advantage of.

What I liked most

I liked the green energy initiative of the Energy Innovation Program and the push by the Canadian government to move Canada toward a low-carbon economy. Considering how many of these programs we have seen geared toward clean energy and energy efficient industry lately, I think this is a hint for small business owners about the future of the Canadian economy. If you aren’t already an efficient, clean energy company, you should be headed that way. I also liked that the Energy Innovation Program offers a grant and not a loan, and that this grant is for a substantial about of money. Not only does the Energy Innovation Program offer up to $5M per project, it offers up to 75% of total eligible project costs for Research and Development Projects. This means a small business owner with a $100,000 R&D budget can suddenly get boosted to an R&D budget of $400,000. Considering R&D is the cornerstone of technology companies, the Energy Innovation Program is offering the small to medium technology company owner a lot of financial support.

Final Thought

“Every day we are paying more for energy than we should due to poor insulation, inefficient lights, appliances, and heating and cooling equipment – money we could save by investing in energy efficiency.”

– Bernie Sanders

American politician, serving as junior United States Senator from Vermont since 2007.

ConnexFund specializes in grants and funding for innovative companies and start-ups with focus on technology and manufacturing. Many Canadian businesses are aware that there is some free money available for them. But not so many know where to find it, how to access it and how to prepare a grant application that is successful. And this is exactly what ConnexFund does!