City of Santa Monica - Green Building Grant Program

June 17, 2009


The Santa Monica Green Building Program offers financial incentives for buildings and innovative building technologies certified to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) standards, awarding two types of grants to promote green building throughout the city. With respect to renewable energy technologies, LEED awards 1-3 points based on the percentage of the total energy load met using renewable energy, including solar, wind, geothermal, biomass, hydro, and bio-gas strategies. Renewable energy points are awarded for electric power generation only. However, additional points are available for reducing the overall energy consumption of buildings, which may be accomplished through other renewable energy strategies.

Grants for new private sector buildings are based on the level of certification attained under the LEED standards:

  • LEED Certified - $20,000
  • LEED Silver - $25,000
  • LEED Gold - $30,000
  • LEED Platinum - $35,000

All new construction and major renovation in commercial, affordable housing, mixed use, and multi-family residential that register for LEED (LEED-NC) certification are eligible to apply. Additionally, grants may be issued for LEED-Homes certified buildings and will range from $2,000 to $3,500 for multifamily projects and from $3,000 to $8,000 for single family homes.

In the interest of promoting the adoption of new technologies designed to reduce the environmental impact of buildings, the City also offers Innovative Technology Grants for energy efficient systems and urban runoff mitigation technologies. These grants do not apply to self-generation technologies, only energy efficiency measures. However, hybrid systems, such as solar absorption chillers or solar-assisted heating systems, may be considered. Grants cover 50% of the cost of eligible systems up to a maximum of $5000.

Innovative Technology grants are available for all building types including commercial, affordable housing, mixed use, and single- and multi-family residential in both new and retrofit applications.

For more information about program eligibility and for application instructions, please refer to the program website. For more information about US Green Building Council or LEED, refer to

Program Overview

Implementing Sector: Local
Category: Financial Incentive
State: California
Incentive Type: Grant Program
Web Site:
Administrator: City of Santa Monica
Start Date:
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:
  • Solar - Passive
  • Solar Water Heat
  • Solar Space Heat
  • Solar Photovoltaics
  • Wind (All)
  • Biomass
  • Geothermal Heat Pumps
  • Daylighting
  • Comprehensive Measures/Whole Building
  • Wind (Small)
  • Hydroelectric (Small)
Incentive Amount: $20,000 - $35,000 for LEED certification; $2,000 - $8,000 for LEED-Homes certification; up to 50% of costs for Innovation Technology Grants
Maximum Incentive: Innovation Technology Grants have a maximum incentive of $5,000.


Name: City of Santa Monica Staff Report (2004)
Name: City of Santa Monica Staff Report (2008)


Name: Brenden McEneaney, LEED AP
Organization: City of Santa Monica
Address: 1212 5th St., 1st Floor
Santa Monica CA 90401
Phone: (310) 458-8549

This information is sourced from DSIRE; the most comprehensive source of information on incentives and policies that support renewables and energy efficiency in the United States. Established in 1995, DSIRE is operated by the N.C. Clean Energy Technology Center at N.C. State University.