If you are a first-time grantseeker or are unsure whether your proposal fits into the Energy Foundation’s guidelines, we strongly encourage you to send a letter of inquiry to grants@ef.org.

How to apply for a grant

Important: Before you spend time preparing and applying for a grant, please read our FAQ and limitations on foundation grants to find out whether we’re able to consider your grant proposal.

When you apply for a grant, you will need to provide us with a completed copy of our standard Grant Application, and your proposal.

Grant Application
To download our form, please click the Grant Application button below and open the electronic PDF. The PDF will open in a new browser window. Important: Do not complete the form online or you may lose the information you enter. Instead, save the form to your computer and then fill out your saved copy. Note: The form may appear to be incomplete and endlessly loading if you open it using the Firefox browser. However, it will appear correctly when you save it using the download icon in the upper-right corner of the PDF screen.

Grant Application

The Proposal
We have no fixed format for proposals. Use the format that best conveys the strengths of your project. In general, a completed proposal includes the following:

  • the application form as a cover sheet
  • a clear statement of the need(s) or problem(s) to be addressed
  • strategy
  • timeline
  • results you expect from your project
  • project budget—including a brief explanation of the budget, a list of other sources of actual and potential funding for the project, and a description of plans to secure additional funding
  • how you will determine whether your project is successful
  • history of organization, including mission and goals

Download an Excel sample budget template here.

Please note that Energy Foundation funds cannot be used for any lobbying purposes. Include a statement acknowledging this restriction on your proposal budget.

Submit the completed Grant Application form and proposal by attaching them to an email and sending them to grants@ef.org.

Supporting documents

Please submit the following documents with your proposal:

  • organization budget
  • most recent audited financial statements
  • IRS letter certifying tax-exempt status
  • current annual report
  • list of board of directors and officers
  • resumes of key personnel involved in project


We accept proposals on a continuous basis. There are no specific deadlines. However, please keep in mind that it takes approximately four to six weeks to review proposals and inquiries and to contact you with an initial response. If you do not receive acknowledgement of your funding request, or have not received a status update after six weeks, please send an email to the attention of the Grants Department at grants@ef.org.