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A Great Way to Fund Energy Efficiency

Feb 28

Written by:
2/28/2012 10:25 AM  RssIcon

Recently dubbed “green revolving funds” (GRF) are sprouting up at colleges and universities all over the US, according to a report released last summer titled Greening the Bottom Line.

Initially funded by endowments, alumni gifts, and various other sources, these funds are used only for initiatives that will save money over time. A portion of the money saved is returned to the fund to pay off the cost of the project. The revolving nature of this strategy allows institutions to fund many energy efficiency improvements with the same seed money.

Though this sort of funding began with larger institutions, many small colleges are now establishing their own funds. Last fall, the Sustainable Endowments Institute issued the Billion Dollar Green Challenge to increase the total seed money across the US to one billion dollars. To date, 34 institutions have committed $79 million to energy efficiency.

The results are truly impressive if you read some of the case studies. So if you are part of a college or university, what are you waiting for? Encourage your school to commit to the Billion Dollar Green Challenge today.

And since colleges and universities are using this strategy so successfully, why can’t other institutions do the same? Why not churches and other non-profits? Government agencies? Corporations? Between using a GRF and taking advantage of grants, rebates and other financing options, there is a way to fund almost any energy efficiency project if you put your mind to it.

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