Community Renewable Energy Deployment Related Links

The following publications and websites provide helpful information for communities planning or implementing renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.


The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and its National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) publish numerous community guides, resources, and examples, as well as publications geared toward organizations that provide technical assistance to communities.

Community Guides, Resources, and Examples

These documents provide how-to information, steps, and resources for community-wide projects, as well as lessons learned from other communities.

A Guide to Community Solar: Utility, Private, and Non-Profit Project Development
This DOE Solar America Communities guide is a resource for community organizers, solar energy advocates, government officials, and utility managers who want to develop community solar projects. Get information on tax policies and incentives, policy best practices, and examples of operational community solar projects.

A Renewable Energy Community: Key Elements
An NREL technical report that provides examples of the elements necessary to develop a renewable energy community, including sustainable design approaches, efficient transportation options, and the utility's role in renewable energy communities.

Community Greening: How to Develop a Strategic Energy Plan
This is a DOE step-by-step guide for city leaders who want to develop a strategic plan using policies that encourage energy efficiency and use of renewable energy in their community. The guide walks you through nine steps of a community energy planning cycle and provides examples of other community plans.

Community Renewables Model Program Rules
Developed by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC) and partially funded by DOE, this document discusses Model Program Rules developed by IREC that lead to a successful community renewable energy program. It addresses system size, interconnection, eligibility for participation, allocation of benefits, and other relevant community issues.

Rebuilding After Disaster: Going Green from the Ground Up
Based on DOE lessons learned from New Orleans, Louisiana, and Greensburg, Kansas, this document provides steps for city leaders to follow that can be applicable to any community, not just those recovering from a natural disaster. Learn about reasons for going green, what it means to be a green community, and how to update your existing community plan.

Community Technical Assistance Publications

These documents are targeted toward organizations that provide technical assistance to communities. They include details on the DOE approach to community-wide renewable energy and energy efficiency efforts.

Effective Community-Wide Policy Technical Assistance
This NREL document compiles lessons learned from DOE/NREL technical assistance provided to help states and localities develop, implement, and evaluate effective clean energy development policies. Learn about the key components of technical assistance, how to build trust within a community, measuring outcomes, and more.

Integrated Deployment Model: A Comprehensive Approach to Transforming the Energy Economy
A technical report that explains NREL's Integrated Deployment model—a comprehensive energy approach that addresses the entire energy system for any given location. Learn the key steps, project life cycle and tasks, and how this model has been implemented through DOE deployment efforts around the world.

Rebuilding Greensburg, Kansas, as a Model Green Community: A Case Study
This comprehensive case study describes technical assistance provided by NREL to help Greensburg, Kansas, rebuild as a green community after an EF-5 tornado nearly leveled the town in 2007. It includes information about key considerations such as resource availability, integrated energy planning, energy efficiency, community-scale and distributed power, transportation, and more.


These websites offer information on state and federal renewable energy and energy efficiency incentives, policies, grants, and technical and financial assistance programs.

Alternative Fuels and Advanced Vehicles Data Center

Search the Alternative Fuels and Advanced Vehicles Data Center database for federal and state transportation incentives and laws on alternative fuels and vehicles, air quality, fuel efficiency, and more.

Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency

Access the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency to find what state, local, utility, and federal incentives and policies are available for renewable energy and energy efficiency in your state.

Visit the website to find and apply for federal grants to help fund your community projects. The site provides a comprehensive list of financial assistance opportunities offered by 26 federal agencies.

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Smart Growth

Get information on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Smart Growth technical and financial assistance programs, grants, and other funding opportunities, as well as tools and resources for communities.