PA’s Innovative Campus Energy Efficiency Fund — Part of President’s Better Building Challenge
Pennsylvania’s leading energy efficiency investment firm – Philadelphia-based Blue Hill Partners – had a seat at the table with President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton when they unveiled a $4 billion initiative to make the nation’s buildings more energy efficient this past December.
Joyce Ferris, Blue Hill’s founder and managing partner, was among 60 CEOs from around the country who traveled to the White House to participate in a roundtable discussion on how to deploy billions of dollars in capital efficiently in order to reduce energy consumption in buildings and create tens of thousands of “green collar” construction jobs.
The White House invited Ferris to discuss Pennsylvania’s Campus Energy Efficiency Fund, which Blue Hill developed jointly with the Pennsylvania Treasury Department and State Treasurer Rob McCord.
“It was an honor to be at the White House and to participate in a day of discussion and meetings with senior White House and Department of Energy officials. Pennsylvania’s Campus Energy Efficiency Fund is a perfect example of the type of innovative investment program that the White House hopes to showcase,” Ferris said. “We are thrilled to highlight Pennsylvania Treasury’s leadership as an investor in the sector.”
“America’s construction workers need jobs, and we need to move toward energy independence,” said Treasurer McCord. “One of the most effective strategies we can deploy to meet both objectives is to make our built environment ‘greener.’ Treasury’s Campus Energy Efficiency Fund with Blue Hill Partners provides a great model for one way to do this, and I’m pleased the White House recognized our innovative joint efforts.”
Treasurer McCord explained the Campus Energy Efficiency Fund will invest in projects at 10 to 12 schools over the next two years that meet certain energy savings criteria such as high efficiency lighting, energy efficient windows, heating/cooling systems, and advanced control systems. Treasury and Blue Hill expect to lead investment of over $45 million in funding, including $10 million from Treasury, to qualifying businesses and projects that provide verifiable energy savings at Pennsylvania private colleges and universities.
The investments are expected to create more than 700 new jobs while cutting campus energy costs by more than $200 million. The Pennsylvania Treasury will earn for the Commonwealth a market-based rate of return on its investment.
In October, Drexel University became the fund’s inaugural participant. The school will work with its project development team –Transcend Equity Development Corporation – to undertake upgrades at six buildings on campus. The improvements are expected to reduce Drexel’s annual energy consumption more than 7 percent and significantly improve the energy and mechanical systems on site. Transcend will design, install, own and operate the project and provide the energy savings as a service to Drexel.
President Obama’s Better Building Challenge calls for $4 billion in combined federal and private sector energy upgrades to buildings over the next two years with a goal of upgrading the energy performance of 1.6 billion square feet of office, industrial, municipal, hospital, university, community college and school buildings by a minimum of 20 percent by 2020.
Visit www.patreasury.gov or www.bluehillpartners.com for more information on the Campus Energy Efficiency Fund.
Blue Hill Partners, Joyce Ferris, (215) 248-5244 or email@example.com
Pennsylvania Treasury, Michael Smith, (717) 787-2991 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Blue Hill Partners, a Philadelphia-based investment firm that serves as an investment manager for the Pennsylvania Treasury, has focused exclusively in the Green Technology sector since 1999. To learn more, visit www.bluehillpartners.com.
State Treasurer Rob McCord brings two decades of business experience to his role as chief executive of the Pennsylvania Treasury, managing the agency as a profit center for the Commonwealth, generating historic investment returns, and working to increase the economic security of Pennsylvanians. To learn more, visit www.patreasury.gov.
Click here for the White House press release.