(Bloomberg) -- California energy agencies along with utility-owners PG&E Corp. and Edison International are applying for a $2 billion federal grant to improve the ability of the most-populous US state to hook up and deliver clean energy. 

The grant would go toward increasing grid capacity and streamlining the process of connecting renewable energy projects, as well as workforce development and education programs, according to a statement Thursday. 

The application comes as California’s main grid operator deals with a large backlog of applications from solar, wind and battery-storage developers wanting to plug into the state’s high-voltage power network. 

The delays are threatening efforts to meet California’s goal of getting 100% of its power from clean sources by 2045. According to a recent BloombergNEF report, a backlog of grid connections poses the biggest challenge for renewable energy development in the US, with projects in California and New York having the lowest chances of securing permits to hook up. 

Some of the federal grant would go toward upgrading 400 miles (644 kilometers) of lines with conductors that can carry more electrons. The grant would also fund technology and process improvements to connect renewable energy projects, according to utilities and the California agencies. The University of California was also part of the application.

Read More: ‘Different Kind of Wire’ Replaces Century-Old Transmission Lines

“This funding will continue to advance grid-enhancing technologies for the state’s transmission planning process as we work toward 100 percent clean electricity,” said California Energy Commission Chair David Hochschild in the statement. 

(Adds additional details starting in third paragraph)

©2024 Bloomberg L.P.