The California Infrastructure and Economic Development Bank (IBank) was created to serve a variety of public purposes including providing an accessible low-cost financing option to eligible borrowers for a wide range of infrastructure projects. Through CLEEN Center programs, IBank encourages and supports the protection of the environment and the State’s vast natural resources and helps the State achieve its greenhouse gas reduction goals by offering financing to various state and local governmental subdivisions and certain non-profit entities for projects that help meet goals including carbon/pollution reduction.
On September 23, 2014, the IBank Board of Directors (Board) unanimously approved the establishment of a new Clean Energy Finance Center (Center) at IBank and the creation of the Statewide Energy Efficiency Program (SWEEP) to be operated within the Center. In 2015, the Center was renamed the California Lending for Energy and Environmental Needs Center (CLEEN Center). CLEEN financing is available in amounts from $500,000 to $30 million, with terms of up to 30 years. The interest rate on CLEEN financings are based on a combination of the Interest Rate Benchmark and Interest Rate Adjustments. Applications are accepted on a continuous basis.
The eligibility criteria and other program requirements for the Infrastructure State Revolving Fund Program (“ISRF Program”) set forth in the “Amended and Restated Criteria, Priorities, and Guidelines for the Selection of Projects for Financing Under the Infrastructure State Revolving Fund Program” (the “Criteria”) are based on the provisions of Chapters 1-2 of Division 1 of Title 6.7 of the Government Code of the State of California, commencing with Section 63000 (the “IBank Act”) as of the date of the adoption of the Criteria.
Subsequent to the date of the adoption of the Criteria, whenever provisions of the IBank Act are changed such that specific provisions of the Criteria are inconsistent with the applicable provisions of the IBank Act, the requirements of the IBank Act shall govern.
The ISRF criteria guidelines in full can be accessed here.
Applicants must meet one of the following definitions:
- Projects financed under a CLEEN Center Program will be required to use commercially proven technologies and to provide written documentation demonstrating the project’s positive impact on energy generation, conservation, or other environmental goals.
- Applicants must demonstrate reasonable ability to repay the proposed financing obligation and all other outstanding debt as well as the ability to maintain on-going operations.
- Each Applicant must authorize its local electric and gas utilities to provide at least 12 months (or longer period as may be required by IBank) of past and ongoing usage and billing records to IBank. Direct financing of all CLEEN projects will be subject to the Credit Underwriting Guidelines and Procedures, Exhibit A hereto, and any additional CLEEN Criteria developed specifically for SWEEP or other CLEEN Programs.
- Eligible applicants under the CLEEN Center Program include any subdivision of a local or state government, including departments, agencies, commissions, cities, counties, non-profit corporations formed on behalf of an applicant, enhanced infrastructure financing districts, special districts, assessment districts, joint powers authorities within the state, or any combination of these subdivisions; as well as schools and hospitals that apply to IBank for financial assistance in connection with a CLEEN Project. Applicants under a CLEEN Center Program may apply on a standalone basis or as the lead applicant as part of a proposal team. Applicants are required to identify all parties of the project team, including capital providers, lead providers, developers, energy service companies, owner-operators, and similar participants.
Projects eligible under the CLEEN Center will be required to use commercially proven technologies that are expected to result in carbon reduction benefits as contemplated under the GHG Reduction Goals or other environmental benefits.
Pursuant to the IBank Act, financial assistance may be provided for designing, acquiring, planning, permitting, entitling, constructing, improving, extending, restoring, financing, and generally developing an eligible facility.
An eligible facility (Eligible Facility) means real and personal property, structures, buildings, equipment and supporting components thereof that are used to provide industrial, recreational, research, commercial, utility or service enterprise facilities, community, educational, cultural or social welfare facilities and any parts or combinations thereof and all facilities or infrastructure necessary or desirable in connection therewith but not housing facilities. Thus, projects (1) having the foregoing characteristics and (2) employing any of the following technologies1, to the extent the proposed technology is or becomes commercially proven, are eligible projects under the CLEEN Center (CLEEN Projects):
Frequently Asked Questions
California Lending for Energy and Environmental Needs (CLEEN) Center
A. Advanced metering systems to support conversion of master-metered buildings to sub-metering B. Data center, information technology, communications energy efficiency C. Energy management and/or control systems, including continuous commissioning D. Demand response programs E. Water conservation, wastewater management, pipeline, mining/extraction, and similar end-use processes, facilities, buildings, and infrastructure F. Lighting and control systems G. Heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems (HVAC) H. Building envelope improvements I. Occupant plug load management systems J. Other electrical load reduction K. Thermal and electric energy storage
A. Fuel cells (continuous duty)–natural gas fuel or hydrogen
B. Advanced Hydrological Pump Storage
C. Other storage technologies
B. Biomass direct combustion
C. Combined heat and power (CHP)
D. Co-fire with existing fossil fuel (only biomass feedstock portion is eligible)
E. Biothermal energy
F. Biomass conversion technologies
H. Landfill gas (methane)
I. Sewage gas (methane)
J. Manure digestion
K. Anaerobic digestion
L. Liquid biofuels
M. Other alternative technologies that are both commercially-proven and expected to contribute to the State’s GHG Reduction Goals
A. Refueling stations for alternative fuel vehicles
B. Electric Vehicles
C. Hybrid electric vehicles
D. Alternative fuel vehicles IBank may consider project technologies not listed above if the potential to increase energy efficiency or renewable energy and/or a potential to decrease greenhouse gas and/or result in other environmental benefits while maintaining low technology risk within the State is adequately demonstrated
Renewable Energy Sector
A. Solar photovoltaic
B. Distribution technologies
C. Solar thermal
E. Thermal storage systems
F. Onshore and offshore wind
A. Small Hydroelectric/Hydropower
B. Waste heat recovery systems
C. New low-impact run-of-facility
D. Biomass feedstock
IBank may consider project technologies not listed above if the potential to increase energy efficiency or renewable energy and/or a potential to decrease greenhouse gas and/or result in other environmental benefits while maintaining low technology risk within the State is adequately demonstrated.