Groundbreaking Social Investment Fund Will Finance Innovative Job-Creation and Energy-Saving Efforts in Low-Income Communities

[New York, September 25, 2009] – Today, at the closing session of Clinton Global Initiative’s Annual Meeting, Living Cities and Green For All unveiled the Energy Efficiency Opportunity Fund alongside former President Bill Clinton.  The groundbreaking fund will finance innovative efforts to retrofit homes, businesses and community facilities to achieve greater energy efficiency while also creating jobs and cutting energy costs for low-income families. By investing in new models for financing retrofits, the Fund will help catalyze and leverage additional funding from federal, state and local governments, financial institutions and foundations. ”This Fund is an extension of Green For All’s commitment to build a clean-energy economy that is ripe with broad opportunity and shared prosperity for every neighborhood,” said Phaedra Ellis-Lamkins, CEO of Green For All.  “Economic recovery and economic opportunity can converge through smart investments in people, place and planet.” The Fund will provide a unique platform for “triple bottom line” returns, including:
  • A financial return of 2 - 3 percent annually;
  • An environmental return in the form of reduced energy consumption and avoided greenhouse gas emissions; and
  • A social return that saves money and creates jobs for low-income people.
”The creation of the Fund is part of our intentional strategy to ensure that low-income people and places can benefit from the emerging green economy,” said Living Cities CEO Ben Hecht.  “ The sponsors estimate that when fully deployed, a $20 million fund would leverage approximately $200 million in financing for building energy retrofits. On an annual basis, this would mean:
  • 37,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions avoided – the equivalent of more than 4,700 cars taken off the road;
  • 25% energy savings on average in 15,000 homes, with total household savings of $6 million;
  • 25% energy savings on average in 2,000 commercial/community buildings;
  • 2,500 clean energy jobs, with substantial opportunity for low-income people; and
  • Improved health increased household income and/or greater worker productivity experienced by 40,000 people.
Green For All and Living Cities are considering investment opportunities both in states traditionally seen as environmental strongholds such as California, Washington and Massachusetts, as well as in cities in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic regions that are developing innovative strategies. # # # About Green For All ( Green For All is a national organization dedicated to improving the lives of all Americans through a clean energy economy.   The organization works in collaboration with the business, government, labor and grassroots communities to create and implement programs that increase quality jobs and opportunities in green industry – all while holding the most vulnerable people at the center of its agenda. About Living Cities ( Founded in 1991, Living Cities is an innovative philanthropic collaborative of 21 of the world's largest foundations and financial institutions. Our members are not simply funders. They participate at the senior management level on the Living Cities Board of Directors and contribute the time of 80+ expert staff toward crafting and implementing our agenda, which is focused on improving the lives of low-income people in America’s urban areas.  Over the past 18 years, Living Cities' members have collectively invested over $600 million which has, in turn, leveraged more than $16 billion in tangible community assets. AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEW, PHAEDRA ELLIS-LAMPKINS, CEO, GREEN FOR ALL, BEN HECHT, PRESIDENT & CEO, LIVING CITIES MEDIA CONTACTS: Andrea Martone 917.929.0527 David Falkenstein 212.691.2800

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