Program Energy Loan Fund (ELF)
Category Regulatory Policy
Implementing sector State
Last Update
State Ohio
Administrator Department of Development
Technologies Solar Water Heat, Solar Space Heat, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Photovoltaics
Sectors Residential

The Energy Loan Fund provides low-cost financing to Ohio-based small businesses, manufacturers, nonprofits,  and public entities for energy efficiency improvements. Through the Energy Loan Fund eligible applicants receive low-interest financing to install efficiency measures that reduce energy by at least 15 percent. For further information regarding eligibility, please view the Program Guidelines and Application ProcessThe Energy Loan Fund is managed by the Ohio Development Services Agency. Funding is provided through the Ohio Advanced Energy Fund and the Federal State Energy Program.

Project Funding

Funding available under these Guidelines is up to $9.5 million in state funds for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 and up to $9.5 million in state funds for FY 2021. Amounts are further divided as follows:

  • $5.5 million each FY is available to Ohio manufacturers, commercial businesses, municipalities, hospitals, and non-profits with the minimum loan amount being $250,000 and the maximum loan amount being $2.5 million.
  • $4 million each FY is available to Ohio public K-12 schools with the minimum loan amount being $250,000 and the maximum amount being $1 million. 


Ohio's 1999 electric-restructuring law created the Energy Loan Fund (ELF), which provides incentives for energy efficiency, distributed energy and renewable-energy projects. The ELF will collect $100 million over 10 years from Ohio's four investor-owned utilities -– Duke Energy (formerly Cinergy), American Electric Power, Dayton Power & Light, and FirstEnergy -- to provide low-interest loans for energy-efficiency improvements at residential, government, educational, commercial, industrial and agricultural facilities. The ELF also provides funding for renewable-energy projects. The Ohio Department of Development's (DOD) Office of Energy Efficiency (OEE) operates the fund. In addition to establishing funding levels, Ohio's restructuring legislation created the Public Benefits Advisory Board, a multi-stakeholder panel that assists the DOD in administering the Universal Service Board and the ELF. The DOD collaborates with the Ohio Public Utilities Commission to design and develop energy programs. The OEE has developed three loan programs for the ELF:

  • Business & Institutional Loans
  • Renewable Energy Financial Assistance Program
  • Double-Saving Loans for Energy Home Improvements

In addition, the ELF provided grants for advanced energy technology projects in 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006. Grant opportunities occur periodically; please contact the OEE for details

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