Grants for Clean Technology Guidebook
Tips on applying for CleanTech grants

As a consultancy home to CleanTech grant specialists, we have considerable experience and are willing to share a few of our most important tips for applying and writing for CleanTech grants.

Executive Summary

  • Plan ahead and stick to the program requirements. Knowing what you’re in for from the beginning is the best way to write a successful application. Visualize the success of your project from the moment you begin drafting your proposal.
  • Use all resources available. Don’t forget that programs want to give your business free money and they are willing to help in any way they can.
  • Get support from your community. CleanTech initiatives affect a variety of players in local environments. To show a funding program that your project will have a positive impact, get your local government and neighboring businesses to write letters of support for you.

Although there are many CleanTech grants available to support hiring, training, and market expansion projects, applying to these programs isn’t always easy – especially when you are new to the grant space. As a consultancy home to CleanTech grant specialists, we have considerable experience and are willing to share a few of our most important tips for applying and writing for CleanTech grants.

1. Get started early

Even if a CleanTech grant doesn’t have an intake or application deadline, it’s best to get started as early as possible. CleanTech programs often require lots of information about your business and project goals that you will need time to collect and prepare. Our best practice is to plan, know what sort of documentation you will need to apply and get your application in as soon as possible. There is nothing more stressful than trying to apply in the final hour and having the program require more information than you anticipated. 

2. Understand your limitations

These days, it feels like there are more grants out there for CleanTech than any other industry. This is excellent news! It means that your business is likely eligible to receive funding from a variety of different programs. However, while you may be eligible to receive funding from multiple programs, it’s important to know your limitations. That is, applying for grant funding becomes a lot of work very quickly, and even if you have a hired position for this work, the more time you spend applying to different programs, the less time you have to focus on each application. This is a great reason to get started working with Granted! Our team of experts can help you find the funding worth applying for and will take all the heavy lifting off your hands.

3. Think about outcomes

The single most important part of a CleanTech application writeup is telling the program what you are going to do with awarded funds. Starting to think early about what sort of initiatives or new projects you can get started on with a bit of extra help. This will allow you to draft your entire application with a clear vision of success. 

4. Use your resources

Remember that CleanTech programs want to reward you with money. You are a valuable asset to the federal or provincial government’s sustainability agenda and the goal of any program is to support businesses that are going to lead the country through a transition to net-neutral. For this reason, the awarding program will always be available for assistance if you need it. Most programs have FAQ resources and post email addresses to reach out to for any needed assistance or clarification. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. This is also how you can build relationships with the programs and get the inside scoop on any new launches or program changes in the future – just like we do at Granted!

5. Stick to the requirements

It’s easy to get excited about all the available CleanTech funds and what a bit of free money could do for your business. Don’t get too far ahead of yourself! All of these programs have specific intentions and requirements. If your application doesn’t meet its criteria, it will be thrown out. Make sure to only draft a project that matches the intention and requirements of the program just as well as it matches the vision you have for your business.

6. Consult the applicant guide

The best way to know you are working within the boundaries of the program when drafting your application is to actively consult the program’s Applicant Guide. This is the document that lists all eligibility requirements and will give you an overview of what the program is looking for. The Applicant Guide is our best friend. Use it as a reference through every step of the application process. 

7. Know your carbon calculations

Most CleanTech grants require carbon sequestration or emissions level calculations, meaning you will need to readily provide calculations and key statistics in your application. We suggest that before you even begin to apply for any CleanTech grant programs, find a way to have this information on hand. 

8. Go to the experts

Even for CleanTech businesses, sourcing carbon emission calculations can be a difficult, tedious, and non-operational task that members of your team may not be equipped to execute. Based on our experience with CleanTech businesses, we recommend reaching out to external consultants that can find out this information for you. Focus on your write-up and don’t stress about the nitty-gritty. 

9. Obtain letters of support

Whenever our clients apply for large-scale CleanTech grants, we make sure to get letters of support from various stakeholders and members of the community. This will show that your project has an impact not only on your business but on the other agents in your space. Reach out to your local government and other businesses that may be impacted by your project to write letters that will boost the legitimacy of your application. 

10. Reach out to your municipality

If you have an idea for a great project that will contribute to the betterment of the local environment and push the transition to sustainable business practices, don’t hesitate to reach out to your municipal government with a proposal. Even if the project doesn’t meet the requirements of a grant you wish you apply for, many Canadian municipalities have ample resources and mandates to support great sustainability initiatives. 

Next Chapter -Top mistakes to avoid when writing CleanTech grant applications

Researching and writing CleanTech grant applications can cause some trouble for newbies. While this is one of the most lucrative grant spaces, it is also one of the most competitive. Here are some of the top mistakes to avoid when writing CleanTech grant applications.

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