The New England Board of Higher Education (NEBHE) announced a new collaboration with the Leaders in Energy Efficiency Financing (LEEF) Network.
The LEEF Network is a regional program of the Sustainable Endowments Institute that empowers Massachusetts and New England institutions of higher education by demonstrating the financial case for treating energy-efficiency projects as an investment.
Developing a self-managed green revolving fund to capture savings generated by energy-efficiency projects ensures long-term capital for investing in future efficiency opportunities. Initiating energy-efficiency retrofits will save on energy and increase productivity, thereby freeing funds for use in other areas of need.
A significant portion of energy-efficiency upgrades are labor-intensive and must be done on site, so cannot be outsourced. Efforts by the LEEF Network to increase energy-efficiency investments of leading institutions will benefit New England by advancing a clean-energy economy with improved air quality, less reliance on fossil fuels, and reduced greenhouse-gas emissions.
Thanks to the support of the Barr Foundation in Massachusetts and the John Merck Fund in the rest of New England, LEEF is able to establish a collaborative network of New England higher education without cost for participation in events or services.
Lisa Hiserodt is program director of the Leaders in Energy Efficiency Financing (LEEF) Network. John O. Harney is executive editor of The New England Journal of Higher Education.