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HBCU Green Fund Leads the Way to Energy Efficiency on Campus

With an emphasis on cutting-edge technology and community activism, historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) can lead the way for American higher education institutions providing a sustainable, Earth-friendly education for their students. Relying mainly on grassroots support and crowdfunding for resources, the HBCU Green Fund will finance campus projects that cut energy and water usage—and thus, energy costs--on HBCU campuses. The Fund will, in turn, reinvest the savings it gains back into its sustainability program to finance additional projects. Our three-pronged approach will help sustain the HBCU legacy for generations to come.

  1. Growing the Green Fund
  • The HBCU Green Fund is launching a nationwide fundraising campaign. The goal is to raise $1 million to finance upgrades on HBCUs all across the country.
  • We’re drawing expertise from Green Revolving Loan Fund (GRF) models to serve black colleges.
  • We’re reaching out to HBCU supporters, alumni and students to donate at least $10.00 to the HBCU Green Fund on an annual basis.
  • Grassroots support should, in turn, pique the interest and inspire support from well-heeled institutions, private companies, foundations, and university endowments.
  1. Finding Projects that Pay

The HBCU Green Fund will look for projects that will reduce energy, cut down on water usage, and minimize the carbon footprint of historically black colleges and universities. With older buildings and millions in deferred maintenance there are lots of excellent cost-saving opportunities. The Fund will evaluate how much each project will improve the sustainability of the campus and save for reinvestment.

To be eligible for consideration, a project must show that it can generate utility savings of 20 percent or more. Independent engineering consultants will review each application for its cost, its savings, its impact on the environment and the time frame needed to pay back any loans incurred.

  1. Students Lead Campus Sustainability

Perhaps the most important part of the HBCU Green Fund’s mission is to engage students. As sustainability projects on campus go forward, the HCBU Sustainability Fellows Training Program will give eager students the knowledge, support, incentives, and technical ability to find, promote, and support green initiatives on their campus. To help students promote the program, the HBCU Green Fund will provide a promotional toolkit that contains materials, signs, inflatable props, and other marketing tools.

Sustainability Fellows will work with their peers and campus leadership to reinforce the need to take an active part in green initiatives to ensure that their institution continues to provide a quality education for generations to come.