Engaging Small to Mid-Size Lenders in the Market for Energy Efficiency Investment: Lessons Learned from the ACEEE Small Lender Energy Efficiency Convening (SLEEC)

Research Report F1401


Casey J. Bell and Virginia Hewitt, ACEEE; Angela Ferrante, Energi, Inc.


The energy efficiency community has worked hard to engage lenders and consumers in what is estimated by the Rockefeller Foundation and Deutsche Bank to be a $279 billion market for energy efficiency investment. Great advances have been made in the federal and public sector’s program development arena, yet private sector transaction volume remains frustratingly low. In an effort to understand nuanced obstacles to market participation, ACEEE and Energi Insurance Services convened a group of small to mid-size lenders to discuss opportunities for increasing both lender and consumer participation in the energy efficiency space. Lender representation spanned state and local commercial banks, community banks, community development financial institutions (CDFIs), credit unions, and “green” lenders. This paper presents the obstacles identified in the convening and offers recommendations to the energy efficiency community to foster growth in the market for energy efficiency financing.

Click here to download the executive summary