TECH Clean California Quick Start Grant Recipients Announced
VEIC and Energy Solutions announce the recipients of the TECH Clean California Quick Start Grants funding proposal. The Quick Start Grants (QSG) program was created as a part of the initiative to fund local, vanguard approaches to accelerate deployment of heat pump space and water heating technologies. The goal of the QSG program is to test market transformation strategies and approaches, support technology development, and leverage high-impact opportunities to quickly increase the installed base of heat pump technologies.
Awards were granted in the amount of $100,000-$250,000 to projects that would be completed within 16 months, result in rapid heat pump installations, and show a clear pathway to scaling heat pump adoption. Over 70 percent of the overall grant budget was allocated to projects that benefit low-income households, disadvantaged communities, or other hard-to-reach customers. Successful strategies and lessons learned from the projects will be incorporated into the broader TECH Clean California program in future years.
“We’re thrilled to be supporting these innovative projects and helping break down barriers to getting heat pumps in homes,” said Emily Lewis O’Brien. “We’re looking forward to learning important lessons through these projects that will help advance the work of TECH Clean California and improve access to clean heating.”
The following organizations were selected to receive Quick Start Grant funding for their proposed projects:
AESC will install Heat Pump Water Heaters (HPWH) in 10 mobile or manufactured homes in high-poverty areas and study the impact on residents’ air conditioning needs and costs.
Barnett Plumbing will provide temporary gas water heaters to their customers in Alameda and Contra Costa counties who need short-term source of hot water while infrastructure for fuel switching to a HPWH is prepared.
Bloc Power + City of San Luis Obispo will collaborate to retrofit 10-12 affordable multi-family housing units in San Luis Obispo with HPWH and Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHP) and will establish a Community Advisory Board to engage community members and develop a communications plan.
Franklin Energy will complete home repairs in the Northern Bay Area that have prevented electrification in an existing Marin Clean Energy (MCE) low-income retrofit program.
Institute of Heating and Air Conditioning Industries (IHACI) will train 10 contractors in the use of their Visual Service software, which enables master installers to remotely supervise multiple field technicians through a video platform linked to wireless diagnostic tools.
New Buildings Institute will enroll 32 sites in a field test of emerging 120V HPWH technology.
Redwood Coast Energy Authority will expand outreach and electrification support to rural and Native American communities in Humboldt County that currently rely on unregulated fuels and now qualify for TECH incentives.
Revalue.io will remediate home health hazards or code violations in low-income West Oakland households through electrification and will provide training to contractors and apprentices to improve the diversity of the local HVAC workforce.
Small Planet Supply will install a packaged, natural refrigerant central heat pump boiler in a 40-unit low-income farmworker community in Delano, CA to test the viability of this novel, easy-to-install solution for other similar buildings.
The Energy Coalition will incorporate HPWHs into an EPIC grant-funded solar + storage pilot in a low- to middle-income advanced energy community in Bassett and Avocado Heights, CA, and study the impact of solar on post-electrification energy bills.
USGBC-LA will install HPWHs and ASHPs in 10 naturally-occurring affordable housing units in Eastern San Fernando Valley, CA and add heat pumps to an education and outreach program.
The landmark Senate Bill 1477, passed in 2018, enables California to make significant strides in reducing greenhouse gas emissions from California homes which currently account for a quarter of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions. The bill created two pilot programs to decarbonize residential buildings: Technology and Equipment for Clean Heating (TECH) and Building Initiative for Low Emissions Development (BUILD).
In December 2021, a team led by Energy Solutions, an Oakland-based clean technologies consulting and implementation company, launched the TECH Clean California initiative. Through a combination of market incentives, supply chain engagement, workforce development, consumer education, regional pilots, and a quick-start grant program, TECH Clean California will install low-emissions space and water heating technologies in California homes and will collect and publish energy and GHG impacts plus market data to inform California’s long-term decarbonization plan. It will also include strategies to make low-emissions heating technologies accessible to more Californians, with a strong focus on low-income residents who pay more of their income on energy costs, and on disadvantaged communities disproportionately affected by air pollution.
Over four years, TECH Clean California aims to transform the space and water heating market by increasing the availability of low-emissions equipment, bringing down costs and reducing greenhouse gas emissions to help improve the health, safety, and well-being of all Californians and advance California’s mission to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045.