The ACUPCC has partnered with the Clinton Climate Initiative to exponentially increase the number
of large-scale energy saving retrofits for campus buildings. Buildings account for 30-40% of
CO2 emissions in the U.S.,1 more than either the transportation or industrial sectors,2
and contribute a major proportion of a campus' carbon footprint. No attempt at carbon neutrality
can succeed without addressing and maximizing the energy efficiency of campus buildings.
ACUPCC signatories are able to take advantage of the benefits of
Energy Efficiency Building Retrofit Program (EEBRP), including project support and CCI's
established relationships with private sector financial institutions, energy services companies
(ESCOs), and product manufacturers. These benefits can lead to lower project costs and greater
CCI's EEBRP's mission is to facilitate GHG emissions reduction in existing buildings through
the widespread uptake of energy efficiency retrofit projects. To achieve this mission,
CCI works with building owners around the world who are ready to implement projects.
Energy Performance Contracting
CCI's EEBRP utilizes Energy Performance Contracting (EPC) as one vehicle for implementation of
energy efficiency building retrofits. EPC is a contractual and financing mechanism through which
building owners can undertake comprehensive energy efficiency retrofits with minimal risk and
financial exposure. EPC has been used for upgrading a variety of building types, including college
and university facilities for decades. It allows the building owner to pay or secure financing
for the installation of efficiency upgrades through the savings in utility bills generated by the
retrofits, rather than through upfront payments from capital budgets or increases in operating budgets.
CCI has agreements with a number of major energy services companies (ESCOs) that offer energy
performance contracting. The agreements outline best practices project development processes and terms
and conditions created to accelerate project development and minimize risks for higher
CCI does not provide funding for projects directly, but works with financial
institutions to increase building owners' access to capital for energy efficiency projects.
Leading financial institutions working with CCI are committing expertise and capital
to funding well-designed retrofit projects undertaken by credit-worthy building owners.
CCI is also working with lenders and other institutions to develop innovative finance structures
for owners with unusual needs or objectives.
The CCI Purchasing Alliance accelerates the adoption of the best and latest energy
efficient products and technologies by CCI's city, college and university, and ESCO partners
worldwide. The Purchasing Alliance negotiates forward pricing agreements with suppliers of
energy efficient building technologies to reduce the cost of energy saving technologies in
the global marketplace. ACUPCC institutions have access to these product discounts either
through direct procurement or via an EPC project.
The ACUPCC and CCI, with the assistance of many industry experts, have created a best practices
toolkit as a resource for signatories interested in learning about and conducting an EPC.
It provides an EPC overview, highlights critical issues, provides in-depth financing information,
contains sample documents, and details industry and state resources. This toolkit is intended
to support a project team throughout the EPC process, from early stage opportunity assessment to
contract negotiation, implementation, and beyond.
If an institution is ready to consider a large-scale building retrofit project to reduce energy use
and costs, it can use the toolkit to prepare for a project. For example:
Research: The project team can educate itself with the EPC project development
process by reading the ACUPCC toolkit and the 'Additional Resources' document.
Develop project strategy: Once a school has familiarized itself with EPC in general and any
applicable state requirements, it can set the stage for a project. Key stages include building the
optimal project team, defining goals for the project, and assessing the opportunity for energy
efficiency retrofit. The 'Critical Issues in Developing and Undertaking an EPC'
section discusses these stages in detail and provides guidance on moving the project to the next phase.
Consider CCI's ESCO terms and conditions: ACUPCC signatories have access to the terms and
conditions in CCI's agreements with ESCOs. However, it is important to note that these terms
and conditions are not legally binding unless written into the contracts for a specific project.
This section prepares an institution to discuss the terms and conditions with ESCOs during project
Determine state procurement requirements: Public institutions may be subject to states'
procurement and contracting statutes requirements that may shape their EPCs.
The 'State EPC Resources' document contains guidance and
links to the relevant resources in each state.
For questions about the toolkit's material or if an institution is ready, but unsure how
to proceed with a project, please contact:
Clinton Climate Initiative EEBRP Team
1 United Nations Environment Programme, Sustainable Construction and Building Initiative
2 U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC)