7 CFR 4280.120 - RES and EEI grantee requirements.

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§ 4280.120 Scoring RES and EEI grant applications.

Agency personnel will score each eligible RES and EEI application based on the scoring criteria specified in this section, unless otherwise specified in a Federal Register notice, with a maximum score of 100 points possible.

(a) Environmental benefits. A maximum of 5 points will be awarded for this criterion based on whether the Applicant has documented in the application that the proposed project will have a positive effect on any of the three impact areas: Resource conservation (e.g., water, soil, forest), public health (e.g., potable water, air quality), and the environment (e.g., compliance with EPA's renewable fuel standard(s), greenhouse gases, emissions, particulate matter). Points will be awarded as follows:

(1) If the proposed project has a positive impact on any one of the three impact areas, 1 point will be awarded.

(2) If the proposed project has a positive impact on any two of the three impact areas, 3 points will be awarded.

(3) If the proposed project has a positive impact on all three impact areas, 5 points will be awarded.

(b) Energy generated, replaced, or saved. A maximum of 25 points will be awarded for this criterion. Applications for RES and EEI projects will be awarded points under both paragraphs (b)(1) and (2) of this section.

(1) Quantity of energy generated or saved per REAP grant dollar requested. A maximum of 10 points will be awarded for this sub-criterion. For RES and EEI projects, points will be awarded for either the amount of energy generation per grant dollar requested, which includes those projects that are replacing energy usage with a renewable source, or the actual annual average energy savings over the most recent 12, 24, 36, 48, or 60 consecutive months of operation per grant dollar requested; points will not be awarded for more than one category.

(i) Renewable Energy Systems. The quantity of energy generated per grant dollar requested will be determined by dividing the projected total annual energy generated by the RES, which will be converted to BTUs, by the grant dollars requested. Points will be awarded based on the annual amount of energy generated per grant dollar requested for the proposed RES as determined using paragraphs (b)(1)(i)(A) and (B) of this section. A maximum of 10 points will be awarded under this criterion.

(A) The energy generated per grant dollar requested will be calculated using Equation 1.

Equation 1: EG/$ = (EG12/GR)
where:
EG/$ = Energy generated per grant dollar requested.
EG12 = Projected total annual energy generated (BTUs) by the proposed RES for a typical year.
GR = Grant amount requested under this subpart.

(B) If the projected total annual energy generated per grant dollar requested calculated under paragraph (b)(1)(i)(A) of this section is:

(1) Less than 50,000 BTUs annual energy generated per grant dollar requested, points will be awarded as follows: Points awarded = (EG/$)/50,000 × 10 points, where the points awarded are rounded to the nearest hundredth of a point.

(2) 50,000 BTUs average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested or higher, 10 points will be awarded. For example, an Applicant has requested a $500,000 grant to install an Anaerobic Digester Project with a 500 kilowatt (kW) generator set. The Anaerobic Digester Project will produce 5,913,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) per year. At 3,412 BTUs per kWh, this is equivalent to 20,175,156,000 BTUs. Based on this example, there are 40,350.312 BTUs generated per grant dollar requested (20,175,156,00 BTUs/$500,000). Because this is less than 50,000 BTUs average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested, points will be awarded as follows:

Points awarded = 40,350.312 BTUs/50,000 BTUs × 10 = 8.07006

This would be rounded to the nearest hundredth, or to 8.07 points.

(ii) Energy Efficiency Improvements. Energy savings per grant dollar requested will be determined by dividing the average annual energy projected to be saved as determined by the Energy Assessment or Energy Audit for the EEI, which will be converted to BTUs, by the grant dollars requested. Points will be awarded based on the average annual amount of energy saved per grant dollar requested for the proposed EEI as determined using paragraphs (b)(1)(ii)(A) and (B) of this section. A maximum of 10 points will be awarded under this criterion.

(A) The average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested shall be calculated using Equation 2.

Equation 2: ES/$ = (ES36/GR)
where:
ES/$ = Average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested.
ES36 = Average annual energy saved by the proposed EEI over the same period used in the Energy Assessment or Energy Audit, as applicable.
GR = Grant amount requested under this subpart.

(B) If the average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested calculated under paragraph (b)(1)(ii)(A) of this section is:

(1) Less than 50,000 BTUs average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested, points will be awarded as follows: Points awarded = (ES/$)/50,000 × 10 points, where the points awarded are rounded to the nearest hundredth of a point.

(2) 50,000 BTUs average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested or higher, 10 points will be awarded. For example, an Applicant has requested a $1,500 grant to install a new boiler. The average BTU usage of the existing boiler for the most recent 12 months prior to submittal of the application was 125,555,000 BTUs per year. If the new boiler had been in place for those same 12 months, the annual average BTU usage is estimated to be 100,000,000 BTUs. Thus, the new boiler is projected to save the Applicant 25,555,000 BTUs per year. Based on this example, there are 17,036.6667 BTUs saved per grant dollar requested (25,555,000 BTUs/$1,500). Because this is less than 50,000 BTUs average annual energy saved per grant dollar requested, points will be awarded as follows:

Points awarded = 17,036.6667 BTUs/50,000 BTUs × 10 = 3.407

This would be rounded to the nearest hundredth, or to 3.41 points.

(2) Quantity of energy replaced, saved, or generated. A maximum of 15 points will be awarded for this sub-criterion. Points may only be awarded for energy replacement, energy savings, or energy generation. Points will not be awarded for more than one category.

(i) Energy replacement. If the proposed RES is intended primarily for self-use by the Agricultural Producer or Rural Small Business and will provide energy replacement of greater than zero, but equal to or less than 25 percent, 5 points will be awarded; greater than 25 percent, but equal to or less than 50 percent, 10 points will be awarded; or greater than 50 percent, 15 points will be awarded. Energy replacement is to be determined by dividing the estimated quantity of Renewable Energy to be generated over the most recent 12-month period, by the quantity of energy consumed over the same period by the applicable energy application. For a project to qualify as an energy replacement it must provide documentation on prior energy use. For a project involving new construction and being installed to serve the new facility, the project may be classified as energy replacement only if the applicant can document previous energy use from a facility of approximately the same size. Approximately the same size is further clarified to be 10 percent larger or smaller than the facility it is replacing. The estimated quantities of energy must be converted to either BTUs, Watts, or similar energy equivalents to facilitate scoring. If the estimated energy produced equals more than 150 percent of the energy requirements of the applicable process(es), the project will be scored as an energy generation project.

(ii) Energy savings. If the estimated energy expected to be saved over the same period used in the Energy Assessment or Energy Audit, as applicable, by the installation of the EEI will be from 20 percent up to, but not including 35 percent, 5 points will be awarded; 35 percent up to, but not including 50 percent, 10 points will be awarded; or, 50 percent or greater, 15 points will be awarded. Energy savings will be determined by the projections in an Energy Assessment or Energy Audit.

(iii) Energy generation. If the proposed RES is intended for production of energy, 10 points will be awarded.

(c) Commitment of funds. A maximum of 20 points will be awarded for this criterion based on the percentage of written commitment an Applicant has from its fund sources that are documented with a Complete Application. The percentage of written commitment must be calculated using the following equation.

Percentage of written commitment = Total amount of funds for which written commitments have been submitted with the application/Total amount of Matching Funds and other funds required.

(1) If the percentage of written commitments as calculated is 100 percent of the Matching Funds, 20 points will be awarded.

(2) If the percentage of written commitments as calculated is less than 100 percent, but more than 50 percent, points will be awarded as follows: ((percentage of written commitments − 50 percent)/(50 percent)) × 20 points, where points awarded are rounded to the nearest hundredth of a point.

(3) If the percentage of written commitments as calculated is 50 percent or less, no points will be awarded.

(d) Size of Agricultural Producer or Rural Small Business. A maximum of 10 points will be awarded for this criterion based on the size of the Applicant's agricultural operation or business concern, as applicable, compared to the SBA Small Business size standards categorized by the NAICS found in 13 CFR 121.201. For Applicants that are:

(1) One-third or less of the maximum size standard identified by SBA, 10 points will be awarded.

(2) Greater than one-third up to and including two-thirds of the maximum size standard identified by SBA, 5 points will be awarded.

(3) Larger than two-thirds of the maximum size standard identified by SBA, no points will be awarded.

(e) Previous grantees and borrowers. A maximum of 15 points will be awarded for this criterion based on whether the Applicant has received a grant or guaranteed loan under this subpart.

(1) If the Applicant has never received a grant and/or guaranteed loan under this subpart, 15 points will be awarded.

(2) If the Applicant has not received a grant and/or guaranteed loan under this subpart within the 2 previous Federal Fiscal Years, 5 points will be awarded.

(3) If the Applicant has received a grant and/or guaranteed loan under this subpart within the 2 previous Federal Fiscal Years, no points will be awarded.

(f) Simple Payback. A maximum of 15 points will be awarded for this criterion based on the Simple Payback of the project. Points will be awarded for either RES or EEI; points will not be awarded for more than one category.

(1) Renewable Energy Systems. If the Simple Payback of the proposed project is:

(i) Less than 10 years, 15 points will be awarded;

(ii) 10 years up to but not including 15 years, 10 points will be awarded;

(iii) 15 years up to and including 25 years, 5 points will be awarded; or

(iv) Longer than 25 years, no points will be awarded.

(2) Energy Efficiency Improvements. If the Simple Payback of the proposed project is:

(i) Less than 4 years, 15 points will be awarded;

(ii) 4 years up to but not including 8 years, 10 points will be awarded;

(iii) 8 years up to and including 12 years, 5 points will be awarded; or

(iv) Longer than 12 years, no points will be awarded.

(g) State Director and Administrator priority points. A maximum of 10 points will be awarded for this criterion. A State Director, for its State allocation under this subpart, or the Administrator, for making awards from the National Office reserve, may award up to 10 points to an application based on the conditions specified in paragraphs (g)(1) through (5) of this section. In no case shall an application receive more than 10 points under this criterion.

(1) The application is for an under-represented technology.

(2) Selecting the application helps achieve geographic diversity.

(3) The Applicant is a member of an unserved or under-served population.

(4) Selecting the application helps further a Presidential initiative or a Secretary of Agriculture priority.

(5) The proposed project is located in an impoverished area, has experienced long-term population decline, or loss of employment.

This is a list of United States Code sections, Statutes at Large, Public Laws, and Presidential Documents, which provide rulemaking authority for this CFR Part.

This list is taken from the Parallel Table of Authorities and Rules provided by GPO [Government Printing Office].

It is not guaranteed to be accurate or up-to-date, though we do refresh the database weekly. More limitations on accuracy are described at the GPO site.


United States Code

Title 7 published on 2015-01-01

The following are ALL rules, proposed rules, and notices (chronologically) published in the Federal Register relating to 7 CFR Part 4280 after this date.

  • 2015-03-26; vol. 80 # 58 - Thursday, March 26, 2015
    1. 80 FR 15885 - Rural Development Regulations—Update to FmHA References and to Census References
      GPO FDSys XML | Text
      DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE, Rural Business-Cooperative Service, Rural Utilities Service, Rural Housing Service, Farm Service Agency
      Correction; direct final rule.
      This document is effective April 27, 2015.
      7 CFR Parts 1709, 1714, 1735, 1737, 1738, 1739, 1740, 1774, 1775, 1776, 1777, 1778, 1779, 1780, 1781, and 1783