Māori Housing Renewable Energy Fund

Funding has been allocated through multiple funding rounds with the last round closing on 30 April 2022 to fund projects finishing by June 2024.

Projects in scope

Projects in-scope for this fund include:

  • Small-scale solar photovoltaic generation at a household level, or potentially small-scale combined installations such as community-scale generation
  • Small-scale local energy storage, for example household lithium ion batteries
  • Solar water heating
  • Technologies and solutions to maximise the benefits of energy generation to the target household such as smart appliances and timing switches, hot water diverters, or information to households on how to best manage their energy use
  • Innovative distribution and retail solutions to manage energy from the local generation and storage, for example micro grids and peer-to-peer trading to share excess energy generation with other households.

Higher-cost and more complex renewable energy technologies such as small-scale hydro or wind energy generation are considered on a case-by-case basis where there is a strong case for investment.


To be eligible for funding, projects had to focus on installing renewable energy technology, and benefit people in Māori housing, for example:

  • Residents of housing on Whenua Māori
  • Papakāinga residents
  • Tenants of Māori Community Housing Providers
  • Māori households or partners working with the Crown through initiatives such as Te Puni Kōkiri Māori Housing investment and the MAIHI programme
  • Households benefitting from housing or energy programmes predominantly led by, or for, Māori-affiliated or Māori-run organisations.
  • Any other housing interests or initiatives that predominantly benefit iwi, hapū or whānau.

Funding details

  • The maximum amount of funding sought in a single funding round was $400,000 for a small-scale project.
  • In the third funding round, Māori organisations, or organisations working on behalf of Māori, with proposals for larger projects could apply for funding up to a maximum of $2 million per project.
  • A successful application in one round does not guarantee further funding would be granted in future rounds.
  • Funding to deliver projects is allocated as grants through contracts with recipients. These contracts are developed for each individual project. Recipients are responsible for procurement directly with suppliers.
  • Proposals for co-funding of projects are considered on a case-by-case basis.

Funded projects

In December 2020, the government called for Expressions of Interest (EOIs) for possible renewable energy projects on Māori housing.

Each EOI was assessed against the funding assessment criteria and projects predominantly led by, or for, Māori-affiliated or Māori-run organisations were prioritised over projects for individual homes.

Renewable energy projects for Māori housing goals, objectives and funding criteria [PDF, 246 KB]

14 projects were granted funding for the first funding round, totalling $2.8 million. Due to the high number of EOIs, organisations behind the remaining projects shortlisted in the first round were invited to re-submit their EOI for round 2.

12 projects were granted funding in the second round, totalling $2.3 million.

Funding round 3 opened in March 2022, this time calling for EOIs for small-scale projects that supported at least 4 households. This funding round also sought Requests for Proposals for larger-scale projects.

16 projects were granted funding totalling $3 million in the first part of round 3 for small-scale projects.

View the list of funded projects

Round 3 funding for larger-scale projects

For the first time, in 2022, funding was made available for larger-scale renewable energy projects. This was for proposals for between $400,000 and $2 million of funding.

Applications for funding round 3 closed in April 2022.

This funding round aims to focus on projects that are more innovative or in areas not well represented by projects that have already received funding. Proposals for feasibility studies are not being considered in this round.

Assessing applications for larger-scale projects in round 3 is a 2-step process. Successful applicants are expected to be announced later in 2023, with the majority of projects expected to be completed by the end of 2024.

New funding for community-based renewable energy projects

In May 2022, the Government announced $16 million over 4 years to support small-scale community renewable energy projects. A further $30 million was committed in Budget 2023. This fund builds on and expands the successful Māori and Public Housing Renewable Energy Fund and aims to support low-income communities or communities with insecure access to energy.

More information is available at:

Community Renewable Energy Fund

Information for suppliers

Procurement for Māori housing energy projects will be done by successful applicants, and will be notified on this website and through relevant industry associations.

Suppliers wishing to receive information on projects going out to market can sign up for email notifications. Please email mhref@mbie.govt.nz with ‘Renewable energy projects news’ in the subject heading to be added to the distribution list.

MBIE is particularly interested in projects that maximise the benefits of renewable energy to users and welcomes bids that draw together multiple suppliers to incorporate a number of different technologies or solutions within a single project.

In some cases, funding contracts may also be developed directly between MBIE and suppliers working on behalf of Māori organisations.

Media releases

Proposals sought for renewable energy trials on Māori housing, December 2020(external link) — Beehive.govt.nz

Solar power initiative win for Māori households and future renewable projects, May 2021*(external link) — Beehive.govt.nz

*This media release announced 15 projects would receive $2.8 million. This later changed to 14 projects with the remaining funding being added to the funding pool in round 2.

More Māori households to benefit from low-cost clean energy fund, March 2022(external link) — Beehive.govt.nz

Government clean energy fund to slash power bills for more Māori and public homes, March 2022(external link) — Beehive.govt.nz

Solar tech boost a cost saver for Māori households(external link) — Beehive.govt.nz

More information

For further enquiries, email mhref@mbie.govt.nz

Last updated: 03 August 2022