EKOenergy’s Climate Fund – Funding Information
For every megawatt-hour of EKOenergy-labelled energy sold, ten euro cents (0.10€) is contributed to EKOenergy’s Climate Fund. This funding is earmarked for new renewable energy projects in low- and middle-income countries, chosen through a transparent selection process.
The total amount of funding provided changes yearly and depends on sales of EKOenergy-labelled energy.
EKOenergy offers funding for renewable energy projects through both open and closed calls.
Open calls (open to all eligible organisations) are for short-term projects, usually lasting 6-18 months, with a current maximum funding of 40,000.00 EUR for first-time partners. The potential funding amount may be higher for organisations that have previously received funding from the Climate Fund.
Closed calls (by invitation only) support larger, multi-year projects run by established organisations that have experience of successfully completing short-term projects with EKOenergy’s funding.
EKOenergy also partners with selected foundations to fund communities beyond our reach.
Funding guidance for short-term projects
EKOenergy announces the open calls for short-term projects in mid-December on different communication channels, including this page.
EKOenergy is committed to a transparent and open selection process. Please check out our due diligence for detailed information about the selection process.
The following selection criteria for EKOenergy’s Climate Fund projects ensure that short-term projects selected through open calls align with EKOenergy’s mission and have a positive, sustainable impact.
- Non-Profit Status: We primarily invite applications from NGOs but also consider applications from other entities with a non-profit status, provided they are dedicated to environmental and social impact, and fulfil other criteria.
- Organisational Capacity: The main applicant organisations should show they have the required capability and a history of successfully completing similar-scale projects. We prioritise organisations with a proven track record of success, as indicated by references.
- Alignment with Strategic Goals: Proposed projects should align with the goals of the applicant organisation.
- Community Engagement: The main applicant must have an established relationship and a deep understanding of the community the project aims to benefit. Prior engagement in project planning of the local community is a mandatory requirement to ensure the prioritisation of community needs.
- Inclusive Projects in Low- and Middle-Income Countries: Projects must benefit priority populations in low- or middle-income countries defined by the World Bank. Participant selection must be based on a genuine needs assessment, strictly prohibiting discrimination to ensure a fair and inclusive approach.
- Climate Benefits: Projects must exhibit clear climate benefits.
- Environmental Responsibility and Inclusive Site Planning: Project activities, installations, or other infrastructure should not harm the local environment and must not take place or be built on sensitive land (land with unclear tenure rights or identified as culturally sensitive or ecologically significant by community stakeholders). We do not fund projects that necessitate physical resettlement of people or assets.
- Upholding Human Rights Principles: All funded projects must be bound by human rights principles, ensuring ethical implementation. For example, the projects are prohibited from involving work contributions from minors and must ensure adequate compensation for work.
- Funding Allocation: Most of the funding should go to the construction of new renewable electricity installations.
In addition to meeting this eligibility criteria, project proposals must provide and include:
- A Summary of a Comprehensive Project Plan that includes a rough budget, communication plan and clear exit strategy to ensure its ongoing benefits.
- Stakeholder Engagement for meaningful collaborations and best possible project outcomes.
- Renewable Energy Advocacy through promoting renewable energy to a broader audience, including local, regional, or national authorities or other relevant stakeholders.
- Holistic Project Approach and Activities to benefit communities in multiple ways, such as improving education and healthcare access, enhancing food security and livelihoods, or advocating for economic justice for women. Projects only focused on providing electricity alone with no other activities do not follow our strategic goals.
Funding exclusion: We do not offer funding for
- Activities and installations that will later generate carbon credits (‘offsets’) because we want to avoid double claims regarding the positive impacts of activities funded by EKOenergy
- General, unrestricted co-funding of larger projects where the exact purpose of our grant is not clearly defined
- Research projects with a focus on research activities
- Events, workshops, networking, and campaigns that are not part of a project
Frequently asked questions – Short-term funding
When is EKOenergy’s Climate Fund’s next open call for proposals?
We usually announce our call for proposals in mid-December on our different communication channels. There will also be a link to the call at the top of this web page.
When will the selection process be completed and projects can be started?
We normally make final decisions in mid-June for open call proposals. We’ll keep you posted on your application status as we go.
Is it possible to apply for multi-year or larger grants?
No. We don’t offer open calls for multi-year or larger grants. These multi-year grants are only available to selected organisations we have partnered with before through closed calls (by invitation only).
Can one organisation submit multiple project proposals to EKOenergy’s Climate Fund?
Yes, you can. There is no limit on how many proposals one organisation can submit during a single call.
Can my organisation reapply if we’ve received funding before or are currently running a project with a grant from the Climate Fund?
Yes. There is no limit to how many times an organisation can receive funding from us.
Organisations that previously got larger, multi-year grants through closed calls can also apply for funding during open calls.
Does EKOenergy provide proposal templates?
No. We prefer you to send free-form proposals that follow the call guidelines. In previous years, proposals were typically up to three pages long.
Can I provide additional documents or other materials to support the funding proposals?
No. We read only the first three pages of the proposals. If we need additional information, we will request that separately.
How detailed should the project budget be?
We don’t need an overly detailed budget, but we want a rough idea of how you plan to use the grant, especially for installations. Normally, 6-8 budget lines are enough.
Does EKOenergy’s Climate co-fund larger projects?
Our focus is on supporting initiatives that wouldn’t happen without our funding. However, the projects we fund can be part of a larger initiative, but it must stand on its own. Your proposal should focus only on the specific part we’re financing, and your reporting should cover only that part.
Is there a time limit for projects?
No, there’s no strict time limit, but given the maximum amount, most projects typically run for 6 to 18 months.
What donor requirements does EKOenergy have?
Our current requirement for funding recipients includes the submission of two reports. The first report, which is a maximum of one page, is expected to be submitted at the half-way point of the project. The second report, which is slightly longer with a maximum of four pages, is required upon completion of the project.
How’s the funding distributed?
The first payment can be made as soon as both parties sign the agreement. Normally, it covers 75% of the total funding, and the rest is paid after the final report is received. We can also work out individual payment plans with organisations with limited funds.
Is there a list of previously funded projects?
Yes. You can find a list of funded projects, including descriptions of those already completed, right here.
Is there a specific focus on particular countries? Why are proposals from some countries “encouraged to apply” according to the call?
Projects must take place in low or middle-income countries, based on the World Bank’s listing. Suppose we have mentioned that we encourage proposals from certain countries in our call. In that case, we’re actively reaching out to organisations in those countries to ensure they’re aware of the opportunity. Unless the call specifies otherwise, there are no extra privileges for projects in those countries.
Is there a need to provide self-financing, and is it an advantage?
EKOenergy’s Climate Fund does not require self-financing from applicant organisations. While some applicants may have extra resources to contribute to a more significant impact, we do not prioritise or emphasise self-financing in the project selection process.
Are proposals in languages other than English accepted?
No. Unfortunately, we currently only accept proposals in English. We are exploring the possibility of accepting proposals in different languages in the future.
What if the deadline has already closed?
We will only consider late proposals (up to two weeks) in the case of force majeure or unexpected events, such as a natural disaster. If you need more time, contact us immediately to avoid unnecessary work. The decision to approve a late proposal rests entirely with the EKOenergy secretariat.
How can the chances of getting funding be improved?
Take your time to review the call and the information on this page. Ensure that your proposal includes all relevant details for the evaluation, regardless of whether your organisation is well-known or has received funding from us. This is especially important because external reviewers are involved in the selection process.
If you have any other questions related to our selection processes or criteria, please contact us at infoekoenergy.org