By Keith Loria, Commercial Observer

During Infrastructure Week in Washington, D.C., this week, Mayor Muriel Bowser announced that DC Green Bank, a publicly funded bank, has committed $7.5 million to community and residential solar projects across the city.

As part of its new commitments, a $7 million loan was provided to PosiGen, which will provide solar energy at no cost to low- and moderate-income (LMI) residents. The loan will unlock funding for the construction of up to 3,000 kilowatts of solar capacity on approximately 320 homes across the District in Wards 1, 4, 5, 7, and 8.

A second $530,000 loan was provided to Uprise Electric to deliver community solar serving 15 residential projects under Solar for All, a program of D.C.’s Department of Energy & Environment (DOEE).

“Partnering with PosiGen, a nationally recognized expert in solar and efficiency finance for low- and moderate-income homeowners, allows us to leverage their experience and scale to support our local solar developers,” Eli Hopson, CEO of DC Green Bank, told Commercial Observer. “By providing financing to Uprise Electric, we are able to invest directly into a local solar developer that is seeking to expand their solar footprint in the district and bring clean and renewable energy to LMI residents and communities.”

Read the Full Article Here

By Tristan Navera, Washington Business Journal

D.C. Green Bank has closed on two deals that will lead to more solar capacity to power 350 homes.

The bank closed on a $7 million loan with PosiGen to add solar energy to power about 320 homes in areas of low to moderate incomes across the District, including in wards 1, 4, 5, 7 and 8. Altogether, the installations total 3,000 kilowatt-hours of capacity, which can generate about 3,600 megawatt-hours of energy each year for the homes. It’s the largest deal of its type for D.C. Green Bank since it was created in 2020.

“We cannot build a clean and resilient future unless all District residents have access to the benefits, and we are putting up a substantial amount of capital to deliver incredible savings to residents,” Eli Hopson, Green Bank’s CEO, said in a statement.

Around the same time, D.C. Green Bank closed on $530,000 worth of loan agreements with Uprise Electric Co. to install another 75 kilowatt hours of capacity on 15 other residential projects. These residences are part of Solar for All, a program of the District’s Department of Energy and Environment that works with local solar contractors to install arrays on homes and cut energy usage.

Read the Full Article Here

(Washington, DC) Today, Mayor Muriel Bowser highlighted progress in expanding access to solar energy through DC Green Bank and announced that, since its launch in 2018, DC Green Bank has now committed more than $12 million to community and residential solar projects serving low-to-moderate income (LMI) residents in the District. DC Green Bank reached the $12 million milestone with two recent loan closings—including a $7 million deal that is the DC Green Bank’s largest. In addition to energy savings, the two deals will provide hundreds of District residents a fair shot through construction job opportunities.

“We were proud to make DC one of the first cities in the nation to launch a Green Bank, and these projects which are helping us build a more sustainable and equitable DC are a good example of why we wanted to create a DC Green Bank,” said Mayor Bowser. “By bringing together DC Green Bank and DOEE’s Solar for All program, we’re lowering electric bills, reducing pollution, and creating jobs for DC residents.”

The $7 million deal with PosiGen will provide solar energy to low-to-moderate income (LMI) residents—at no cost to them—across approximately 320 residential projects, with the initial slate of installations coming to Wards 1, 4, 5, 7, and 8. A deal of more than $530,000 with Uprise Electric Company will deliver funds for community solar serving 15 residential projects under Solar for All, a program of the Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) administered by the DC Sustainable Energy Utility.

The PosiGen loan agreement will unlock funding for the construction of up to 3,000 kW of solar capacity. The installations are expected to create hundreds of clean economy jobs in the construction phase. They will also generate more than 3,600 MWh of renewable energy annually, while avoiding more than 2,500 tons of CO2, which is equivalent to an average passenger vehicle driving more than 6 million miles annually.

Under the Uprise deal, more than a dozen LMI District families in the initial 15 projects will see their electricity bills cut by 50%. The deal is expected to create up to 13 clean economy jobs, generate more than 90 MWh of renewable energy, and avoid approximately 64 tons of CO2 equivalent annually – which is equivalent to an average passenger vehicle driving more than 160,000 miles. The Uprise deal couples DC Green Bank’s affordable financing with more than $100,000 from the Solar for All program, as well as an additional pool of capital that will be an incentive to deploy solar installations beyond the initial 15 projects. This is the third year in a row that DC Green Bank has provided financing to a DC-based solar developer to deliver community solar projects through Solar for All.

“This is a huge win for the DC Green Bank and for the District as a whole,” said DOEE Director Tommy Wells. “Community solar is just one of the ways Mayor Bowser’s administration is working to secure a cleaner, greener future for the District, and we are so pleased to see these kinds of partnerships growing in the District.”

Mayor Bowser introduced legislation establishing the DC Green Bank in 2017 and the law was enacted in 2018 making the District the second city in the country to establish a Green Bank. This policy tool uses public purpose funding to attract private investment in order to expand renewable energy, lower energy costs, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, create green jobs, and enhance resilience.

“We are proud to work with PosiGen and Uprise to expand access to solar and showcase why DC is leading the way on access to clean, renewable energy as well as prioritizing low to moderate income communities under Solar for All,” said DC Green Bank CEO Eli Hopson. “We cannot build a green and resilient future unless all District residents have access to the benefits, and we are putting up a substantial amount of our capital to demonstrate that this investment model works and delivers incredible results across the board.”

Read the Full Press Release Here

DC Green Bank and PosiGen today announced the closing of a groundbreaking $7,000,000 deal to accelerate the deployment of residential solar across the District for low-to-moderate income (LMI) residents. The loan agreement will unlock funding for the construction of up to 3,000 kW of solar capacity on approximately 320 homes across the District, with the initial slate of installations coming to Wards 1, 4, 5, 7, and 8. The installations are expected to create hundreds of clean economy jobs in the construction phase and generate more than 3,600 MWh of renewable energy on a yearly basis, while avoiding more than 2,500 tons of CO2 equivalent annually – eliminating a comparable amount of emissions each year to an average passenger vehicle driving completely around the circumference of the earth more than 24 times.

Eli Hopson, CEO of DC Green Bank, said of the large-scale deal, “Bringing successful, mission-aligned partners like PosiGen into the District is a big part of why DC Green Bank is leading the way on access to clean, renewable energy for LMI communities. We cannot build a clean and resilient future unless all District residents have access to the benefits, and we are putting up a substantial amount of capital to deliver incredible savings to residents and benefits for the planet.” To date, DC Green Bank has committed more than $12 million to community and residential solar projects across the city.

In addition to this expansive solar portfolio, DC Green Bank and PosiGen are in discussions to pursue financing partnerships in other arenas, particularly on energy efficiency upgrades that bring down utility costs for LMI residents and decrease the environmental impact of building systems and appliances. Ben Healey, Chief Commercial Officer for PosiGen, said of the partnership, “DC Green Bank is an indispensable partner as we expand our impact model to the District. PosiGen was created to serve LMI residents and deliver financial and energy security in every community, and this solar portfolio will be a shining example of the inclusive, clean energy future that we must work together to begin to build immediately.”

Read the Full Release Below

May-2022-Posigen_DCGB-Press-Release

DC Green Bank and Uprise Electric Company today announced the closing of a more than $530,000 deal to accelerate the deployment of community solar across the District. The loan agreements will deliver funds for the construction of approximately 75 kW of capacity across 15 residential projects. In addition to the funds allocated for the construction of existing projects in the company’s pipeline, the deal also includes hundreds of thousands of dollars as part of a revolving credit facility to make financing available for the development and deployment of up to an envisioned 75 kW of additional community solar as well. The initial 15 sites are part of Solar for All, a program of the District’s Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) and administered by the DC Sustainable Energy Utility that works with local solar contractors to expand the deployment of community solar and cut electricity costs for income-qualified residents by as much as 50%. The initial 15 projects are expected to create up to 13 clean economy jobs, generate more than 90 MWh of renewable energy, and avoid approximately 64 tons of CO2 equivalent annually – eliminating a comparable amount of emissions each year to an average passenger vehicle driving more than 160,000 miles.

This is the third year in a row that DC Green Bank has provided financing to a DC-based solar developer to deliver community solar projects through the Solar for All program. Eli Hopson, CEO of DC Green Bank, said of the deal, “We are excited to work with Uprise Electric to expand access to solar and strengthen the clean economy right here in the District. By continuing to invest in projects that are part of the city’s Solar for All program, we are demonstrating our commitment to ensuring that LMI families are prioritized in our accelerated transition to a clean energy future. We know that this investment model works, and we are looking forward to building additional partnerships with private lenders to replicate this success and unlock a large influx of capital into the city’s solar market.”

Uprise Electric is looking to scale up their operations and the deployment of solar across the city. Accessing affordable financing alongside Solar for All funding will allow Uprise to take a major step in that direction, and the revolving credit facility will incentivize the expansion of the company’s solar footprint and provide the company the flexibility needed to pursue multiple new projects. “I started Uprise so that we could provide homeowners in DC with the highest quality solar options regardless of income level. Partnering with DC Green Bank has helped me get closer to that goal,” Chris Sewell, founder of Uprise Electric Company, said.

Read the Full Release Below

May-2022-Uprise-Electric_DCGB-Press-Release-1

Building a clean future cannot wait. That is why DC Green Bank has been in discussions with Councilmember Mary Cheh, Chair of the Committee on Transportation and the Environment, and her staff to clarify the Green Finance Authority Establishment Act of 2018 as it relates to equitable investments in a clean energy future. In order to meet our city’s collective climate and sustainable energy goals we must fully transition off of fossil fuels and electrify the District. However, at present, converting legacy methane systems to fully electric heating, cooling, and cooking systems can be significantly more expensive than ultra-high efficiency fossil fuel-based systems, even accounting for lower fuel costs. This cost differential can place a large financial burden on low-income communities, community-based organizations and faith-based institutions, and residents that are least responsible for our climate crisis and simply happen to live, work, or worship in buildings that were built for methane systems. It can put some of our most vulnerable in a challenging position: choose the lower up-front cost fossil fuel option or choose the cleaner electric option that may carry a price tag that is, in some cases, 2-3x more expensive than a comparable fossil fuel-based system. An equitable transition to a clean future is a high priority for Mayor Bowser, the City Council, and DC Green Bank, and that is why we will meet this challenge head-on. We have asked the Council to introduce language to amend the Green Finance Authority Establishment Act of 2018 to formally codify our existing financing approach by prohibiting DC Green Bank from supporting on-site fossil fuel-based systems. This is a vital step to ensure that the District does not lock in fossil fuel infrastructure for decades to come, when the best science available says that we must begin our transition to clean energy now. To address equity and financial gaps that may emerge as part of this transition, we have also asked the Council to identify additional financial resources to ensure that our most vulnerable residents and communities are able to choose a clean energy future in a way that does not create an undue financial burden on them and delivers key environmental, public health, financial, and other benefits along the way. The District is a national leader on issues related to climate, the environment, sustainability, and equity, and taking this step today to introduce language to prohibit the usage of green bank resources to fund fossil fuel infrastructure ensures that we remain on the cutting edge on the road to a clean and inclusive future for all.

51022-Statement-on-Fossil-Fuel-Policy
  • April 4, 2022
  • Virtual
  • Registration Closed

    Connect with lenders:
    City First Enterprises’ Geoffrey Shepard at geoffery@cfe.org
    DC Green Bank’s Matthew Hickman at mhickman@dcgreenbank.com
    • Explore other community lenders if you need financing for other types of projects or pre-revenue (click VIEW FILE here)

    Money Monday

    April 4, 2022