Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII) – Renewables and Low Emissions Round

This program provides small to medium sized enterprises with funding to develop innovative solutions for government policy and service delivery challenges. This round focuses on renewables and low emissions practices.
This grant is currently closed to applications

What do you get?

Grants from $50,000 to $100,000 for a renewables and low emissions Feasibility project. If your Feasibility project is successful, you may receive up to $1 million to develop a proof of concept.

Who is this for?

Small to medium enterprises.


We are seeking innovative solutions for government policy and service delivery challenges. The three challenges in this round of BRII focus on renewables and low emissions practices.

The challenges are:

  • Increasing energy efficiency of commercial fishing operations.
  • Powering safe drinking water for Australian First Nations remote communities.
  • Alternative packaging for premium Australian wine.

These challenges support the Government’s Net Zero commitment and the National Reconstruction Fund priority area of renewables and low emissions technologies.

There will be two grant opportunities as part of this program:

Stage 1 – Feasibility grant opportunity

The purpose of the Feasibility grant is to test the technical and commercial viability of your proposed solutions.

Stage 2 – Proof of Concept grant opportunity

The purpose of the Proof of Concept grant is to support you to build on your Feasibility project and produce working prototypes or demonstrations.

Only applicants that complete a successful Feasibility project will be invited to submit an application for Proof of Concept funding.

Renewables and Low Emissions challenges fact sheets

Check our resources to learn more about the program and the challenges.

Increasing energy efficiency of commercial fishing operations

pdf · 0.35 MB docx · 1.13 MB

Alternative packaging for premium Australian wine

pdf · 0.39 MB docx · 1.89 MB

Powering safe drinking water for Australian First Nations remote communities

pdf · 0.34 MB docx · 1.09 MB

Information sessions

Information sessions were held to provide more information for each challenge in March 2024. A recording of each webinar is available:

Increasing energy efficiency of commercial fishing operations

Agencies: BRII and Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC).

View the Increasing energy efficiency of commercial fishing operations webinar video

Powering safe drinking water for Australian First Nations remote communities

Agencies: BRII and Department of Climate Change, Energy, the Environment and Water (Water Infrastructure and Investment Division) (DCCEEW).

View the Powering safe drinking water for Australian First Nations remote communities webinar video

Alternative packaging for premium Australian wine

Agencies: BRII and Wine Australia.

View the Alternative packaging for premium Australian wine webinar video

Webinar questions and answers

A summary of audience questions asked or taken on notice during the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII) Renewables and Low Emissions webinars is below. Additional questions were also answered live during the webinar, or can be found in the BRII FAQs.

Can a university apply for the grant, or can universities partner with a company?

Universities are not eligible to apply for this grant.

Universities may be a project partner to a lead applicant. The lead applicant would need to meet the eligibility criteria.

As per the grant opportunity guidelines, applicants who are controlled by a Publicly Funded Research Organisation, including university spinoffs with at least 40 per cent university ownership, must have annual turnover in isolation of less than $20 million for each of the three financial years prior to lodgement of the application, to be eligible to apply.

Can we submit two different applications?

An applicant can submit multiple applications, but can only be awarded one grant under the BRII Renewables and Low Emissions round if successful.

If you enter an agreement under the Business Research Initiative and Innovation (BRII) program, you cannot receive other grants for this project from other Commonwealth, State or Territory granting programs.

Prior to feasibility study, it may be difficult to estimate the 'impact' and 'adoption costs' of the proposal. Any advice on how to address this in application?

The feasibility project itself is you examining how you would approach this. It's doing the research and it is your best estimate. It's what you think you could do with that.

As part of your project plan, you do need to submit a risk analysis which could factor in the risks associated with potential unknowns and how that would form part of your feasibility study.

Is protection of confidential IP catered for in the application and review process? Do technical reviewers sign a binding NDA?

Grantees will retain intellectual property rights and the right to sell in domestic and global markets. During the application assessment process all assessors will complete a conflict of interest declaration and be made aware of their probity responsibilities.

It will be up to individual grantees to enter into NDAs with relevant parties at their own discretion.

If an applicant has already completed stage one feasibility with Australian universities, can they go directly to stage two proof of concept and be eligible?

An applicant must complete a successful feasibility project as part of this BRII round to be invited to apply for a Proof of Concept project. Applicants cannot apply for proof of concept under this grant opportunity if their feasibility study was completed outside the BRII program.

I have a really strong idea but I’m not used to Government forms. Will this be an issue?

The application form is a straightforward process in the application portal. You can view a sample application to assist you in preparing your application.

Applications which meet the eligibility criteria will progress to merit assessment, where they will be assessed against the merit criteria outlined in the grant opportunity guidelines.

For the criteria of national security risk assessment, how in depth does the risk assessment have to be?

You must attach a project plan, which includes a risk strategy (including national and cyber security risks) to your application. The detail of this risk strategy will be dependent on the requirements of your individual project and the level of risk involved.

Does this grant require matched funding?

This grant opportunity does not require matched funding.

If need more than 3 months to complete the feasibility stage, what will happen?

The BRII project allows 3 months for the feasibility project. When forming your project plan, you will need to ensure that your planned activities can be completed within this timeframe.

Do we need to apply for a feasibility grant before we can apply for proof of concept?

SMEs can apply for a competitive grant to undertake a Feasibility project on their proposed solution to a challenge. Grantees who have successfully completed a Feasibility project can be invited to apply for a further competitive grant for the development of a proof of concept.

If I have an international partner, can they use money for travel to Australia?

Overseas travel is limited to the reasonable cost of accommodation and transportation required in cases where the overseas travel is material to the conduct of the project in Australia. Overseas travel must be at an economy rate and you must demonstrate you cannot access the service, or an equivalent service in Australia.

Eligible overseas activities expenditure is generally limited to 10 per cent of total eligible expenditure.

Can you please provide some guidance on the intended use of the feasibility grants - i.e. physical assets, business plans or 3rd party reports?

Successful Feasibility stage projects will demonstrate the technical and commercial feasibility of their proposed solution to the challenge. Further information can be found in the grant opportunity guidelines.

To be eligible your project must test the feasibility of your solution to one of the challenges (see section 3 of the grant opportunity guidelines).

Eligible activities must directly relate to the project and can include work to determine:

  • the technical viability of the proposed solution
  • the novelty of the proposed solution compared to existing offerings
  • the commercial potential of the proposed solution in domestic and/or international markets
  • any security issues directly relating to your proposed solution.
  • We may also approve other activities.

Is the program to help SME or find best solution? If business is over $20m threshold, how can their solution be put forward to solve the problem?

The objective of the Business Research and Innovation Initiative (BRII) program is to drive innovation within small to medium enterprises (SMEs) and the government by encouraging the development of innovative solutions by SMEs to public policy and service delivery challenges.

Larger organisations may partner with an SME to support the delivery of their innovation under the BRII program.

Is the purpose of the PoC stage to get the product to trial stage (i.e. prototype built), or is a pilot also required within the 18 months?

Your PoC project must build on your Feasibility project and involve producing a working prototype or demonstration of your innovative solution to a challenge.

Eligible activities must directly relate to your project and can include:

  • determining the nature, functionality and capabilities of your solution
  • differentiating your solution from any similar existing products or services
  • testing the performance of your solution in relevant operational environment(s)
  • commercialisation of your solution, including any products or services.

We may also approve other activities.

For the project plan - should this be for just the feasibility plan or is this for the whole project - i.e. the proof of concept etc?

The project plan provided in your feasibility application only needs to apply to the Feasibility stage project. A separate project plan will be required for the Proof of Concept stage.

How long is the application expected to take? Are there successful grant application examples available to review?

Applications will close at 5.00pm AEDT on Wednesday 3 April 2024. Assessments of applications are expected to take approximately 16 weeks.

Previous case studies of successful recipients are available.

How much transparency will there be into which solutions are selected for feasibility and then for the POC?

Successful grant recipients for both stages will be published on this website.

Is the challenge from the FRDC focused specifically on vessels? Or does it also consider decarbonisation of operations in farmed aquaculture?

Any solutions which can improve energy efficiency of the fishing and aquaculture sector are welcome to apply. The goal is to improve energy efficiency of commercial fishing operations by 30% and the FRDC is open to all innovative solutions by SMEs which may assist in reaching this goal.

My technology decarbonises terrestrial aquaculture (as opposed to ocean based aquaculture), does FRDC think that I should I still apply or not?

This challenge is focussed on commercial fishing, but solutions will likely be relevant to aquaculture and may have application in other agricultural sectors. If your technology can make big improvements in energy efficiency, we encourage you to apply.

Most carbon efficiency improvements we're aware of deliver significantly less than 30% savings on their own. Are they relevant in this round?

The 30% target is indicative and intended to signal a need for innovations that make a significant difference, rather than incremental change. However, submissions that group smaller solutions into a cohesive energy efficiency package are welcome.

Does the funding opportunity also include improved carbon calculators and accounting methodologies?

Yes, this would be within scope of the project. FRDC is open to a range of solutions, including physical and technology-based solutions.

Can you use existing technology to increase efficiency in existing vessels?

BRII is seeking new to world innovations. However, adapting existing technology to be used in new, innovative ways is within scope.

What does the program define as "premium" wine?

Premium, in the context of this challenge, is not a quality descriptor but refers to wine that is anticipated to age and develop further in the packaging before consumption rather than being purchased and opened soon after it is packaged. Applicants are encouraged to look for solutions for all wine types that address the issues of both storage of wine / shelf life and aging.

Applicants are encouraged to look for solutions which would be suitable for all wine. There are additional challenges associated with storing premium wine due to shelf life and aging which would need to be considered in your solution.

Will the grant support a process to find new materials i.e. we start with an existing solution e.g. a pouch and then work towards a new material and/or design? If I have a solution that is primarily developed for non-alcoholic wine and over beverages, will this be suitable?

BRII is seeking new to world innovations. However, adapting existing technology to be used in new, innovative ways is within scope.

Can you please define a 'solution' i.e. must it be a product or can it be a process, distribution method, branding / marketing, and/or mix of all?

Your solution may be a product, process or service which addresses the challenge.

Will you be able to assist with the WET requirements with ATO for size of packaging as it can be hard to navigate?

Assistance with ATO’s requirements for WET is outside the scope of this program.

Do you want to see potential solutions that could significantly lower the carbon footprint of wine but that don’t do so by replacing or improving glass bottles?

The aim of this challenge is to reduce emissions associated with packaging of premium Australian wine. This may be a new package option or an approach to reduce emissions within the current packaging options.

Your solution should correlate as closely as possible to packaging, but you can explore blue sky opportunities associated with this.

How will the 'market' be incentivised to buy a solution?

DCCEEW is seeking a solution which can effectively meet Australian water quality standards, is low cost to set up and maintain, has minimal maintenance needs, is able to withstand harsh weather conditions, and is able to operate continuously (even at night).

At the end of the proof-of-concept round, the Australian Government agency that proposed the challenge (DCCEEW) has the option to negotiate the purchase of the solution, but is under no obligation to do so. Any purchase of the solution will be subject to negotiation between the agency and the solution provider in good faith. While successful solutions to the challenge will have a ready market in Australia, there are also overseas markets for these solutions.

To submit a proposal do we need to select a specific community? How can we get the information relevant for that community?

DCCEEW acknowledges that it can take a long time to involve communities and build their trust, and it may not be possible to engage with a community prior to applying for this BRII round. Applicants may wish to outline which potential communities they may engage with, or what method they would use to identify communities they wish to work with, and how they would work with them.

DCCEEW can support successful grant recipients to identify and engage with communities or areas which may be interested in being involved.

Is the government open to considering new models of water supply? Specifically - differentiating between water for drinking vs. water for non-drinking?

The focus for this challenge is drinking water. However, if there is a solution that can also provide clean water for other means then this could be beneficial.

If we have already identified a community to work with and are working with them - is this ok/beneficial?

Yes, absolutely. If you are already working with a community then this may help to inform your feasibility project. DCCEEW can assist in identifying communities to work with if you have not previously worked with a remote community.

Can I please clarify what is meant when Kelly said 'needs support from the state and federal governments?" do we need to contact the gov prior to applying?

This challenge has support from state and territory jurisdictions, including Queensland, Western Australia, Northern Territory, and South Australia. The successful grant recipients can approach those jurisdictions, or others if another region is identified as part of the proposal, about the potential solution and their involvement in it.


Need help?

Let us answer your question via phone, email or live chat. And if we can't help, we'll put you in touch with someone who can.

  • Phone:
  • Open Hours:
    Monday – Friday, 8am – 8pm across Australia
  • Website:

Key documents

Grant opportunity guidelines – Feasibility

pdf · 0.45 MB docx · 0.39 MB

Grant opportunity guidelines – Proof of Concept

pdf · 0.46 MB docx · 0.39 MB

Sample application form – Feasibility

pdf · 0.30 MB docx · 0.10 MB

Sample grant agreement – Feasibility

pdf · 0.25 MB docx · 0.13 MB

Frequently asked questions

pdf · 0.11 MB docx · 0.07 MB

Project budget template

xlsx · 0.17 MB

Letter of support template

pdf · 0.06 MB docx · 0.03 MB

Financial turnover declaration template

pdf · 0.06 MB docx · 0.06 MB

Feasibility project report template

pdf · 0.08 MB docx · 0.13 MB

Authorised by the Australian Government, Canberra.

Was this page helpful?