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  • Writer's pictureTom Kenny

CEC - Cost Share for Federal Funding Opportunities Related to the Clean Hydrogen Program

The California Energy Commission (CEC) intends to release a solicitation to provide cost-share funding to applicants that apply for and receive an award under an eligible federal funding opportunity announcement (FOA) for hydrogen technology projects that meet the requirements of Assembly Bill 209 (Committee on Budget, Chapter 251, Statutes of 2021) and the requirements of the solicitation. Eligible projects under AB 209 are specific to hydrogen derived from water using eligible renewable energy resources, as defined in Section 399.12 of the Public Utilities Code, or produced from these eligible renewable energy resources.

This solicitation could provide a portion of the cost share required for Area of Interest 1 of DE-FOA-0002922: Clean Hydrogen Electrolysis, Manufacturing, and Recycling, including the following topics:

  • Low-Cost, High-Throughput Electrolyzer Manufacturing

  • Electrolyzer Component and Supply Chain Development

  • Advanced Electrolyzer Technology and Component Development

All projects must be located in California.

Due to the short time for applications, applicants are encouraged to review GFO-21-901 (Section IV) (Electric Program Investment Charge Cost Share Solicitation) for elements that could be considered in the scoring criteria. As an example, potential scoring criteria for the Clean Hydrogen Program could include the following (note that these could change when the CEC solicitation is released):

  • Technical Merit focuses on how your technology/approach/strategy will have competitive advantages over others, how it will lead to increased adoption, and how your project will meet or exceed the technical specifications set by the federal funding opportunity.

  • Technical Approach focuses on the approach used in performing the work, metrics used to access project performance, potential technical risks and mitigation strategies, local community and labor engagement, and status of and information on compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act and permitting.

  • Impacts and Benefits to California* explains how the proposed project will benefit California and provides clear, plausible, and justifiable descriptions of annual benefits, including:

    • Annual clean hydrogen produced (kilograms or metric tons), annual thermal and electricity savings (therms and kilowatt-hours), and annual cost reductions.

    • Greenhouse gas emission reductions in metric tons, air emission reductions (for example, oxides of nitrogen [NOx]) by pollutant and type, water savings in gallons and associated cost reduction, or increased safety or a combination thereof.

    • Improved equity (for example, responsibly sourcing and managing water).

    • Workforce development (for example, jobs creation and retention).

  • Team Qualifications, Capabilities and Resources emphasizes the credentials of your team in completing the project if awarded funding. Evaluations of ongoing or previous projects including project performance by applicant and team members will be used in scoring for this criterion. These evaluations can include contacting references.

  • Budget and Cost-Effectiveness focuses on the reasonableness of direct and indirect costs associated with the project.

  • Funds Spent in California* compares the federal and CEC funds spent in California to the amount of CEC funds requested. Please see the leverage ratio requirements indicated in GFO-21-901 for reference on how this ratio is calculated and points allocated.

  • Disadvantaged/Low-income Communities and/or Tribes focuses on how the project would benefit these communities.

*Each of these two criteria constitutes 30 percent of the scoring points in GFO-21-901.

Anticipated Release Date: May 2023

Total Funding Available: $20,000,000

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