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Making energy efficiency bankable: Lessons learned from a global market transformation effort

Panel: 3. Local action and national examples

This is a peer-reviewed paper.

Milton Bevington, University of Massachusetts, Boston, USA
Christopher Seeley, William J. Clinton Foundation, Thailand


In May 2007, former U.S. President Bill Clinton and Mayor of London Ken Livingstone announced an ambitious energy efficiency best practices effort. The Energy Efficiency Building Retrofit Program of the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI) explored ways to make efficiency retrofit projects more bankable for CCI client cities in the C40 Climate Leadership Group founded by Livingstone by using unsubsidized, commercial models applicable in a variety of countries and considerably more scalable globally than current regulated and legislated models tied to local jurisdictions.

In this context, the authors provided pro bono advisory services to building owners in over twenty large cities worldwide, negotiating technical and financial performance terms on more than a hundred projects. Their experience suggests that, when deployed in combination with each other, these models can potentially transform the global market for energy efficiency retrofit projects, especially in the underserved private sector where financing is perhaps most difficult.

From these efforts emerged four promising models. Energy Performance Contracting (EPC), Energy Performance Lending (EPL), Managed Utilities Service Contracting (MUSC), and Equipment Leasing.

This paper describes some of the pilots undertaken, lessons learned, and implications for a broad acceleration of energy efficiency investment. It also confirms the emergence of a new Asian center of innovation in energy efficiency project finance.


Download this paper as pdf: 3-005-13_Bevington.pdf