Columbia, South Carolina [RenewableEnergyAccess.com] Public buildings in South Carolina that need some help with heating could find a thermal collector solution courtesy of the South Carolina Energy Office. The energy office is looking for applicants to apply by December 10, for the second round of funding through the Public Building Solar Initiative.A minimum of $80,000 and a maximum of $100,000 have been allocated for grants under this program. Grants will be awarded for 75 percent of the cost of designing and installing a solar water-heating system and purchasing a 5-year service contract. The maximum grant award is $25,000. The Public Building Solar Initiative aims to demonstrate solar water heating technical and economic efficiency in public facilities. Using a heating system powered by the sun could save money for taxpayer-supported entities. It would also put solar thermal technology on display so people can learn about the heating solution and see the direct benefits of installing a system. Eligible institutions are state agencies, colleges and universities, public school districts, local governments and non-profit organizations. Applicants must document a projected energy cost savings payback of eight years or less. To be considered for funding, an applicant must complete a Public Building Solar Initiative grant application, along with a study detailing existing water heating equipment, proposed solar equipment, the annual cost savings that will result from installation of the solar equipment, and the project cost. For more information and an application, please follow the link below.