(Electricity Markets and Policy Group, Berkeley Lab)
Nonresidential buildings are responsible for over a quarter of primary energy consumption in the United States. Efficiency improvements in these buildings could result in significant energy and utility bill savings. To unlock those potential savings, a number of market barriers to energy efficiency must be addressed.
Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) financing programs can help overcome several of these barriers with minimal investment from state and local governments. With programs established or under development in 22 states, and at least $521 million in investments so far, other state and local governments are interested in bringing the benefits of C-PACE to their jurisdictions.
Lessons in Commercial PACE Leadership: The Path from Legislation to Launch, aims to fast track the set-up of C-PACE programs for state and local governments by capturing the lessons learned from leaders. The report examines the list of potential program design options and important decision points in setting up a C-PACE program, tradeoffs for available options, and experiences of stakeholders that have gone through (or are going through) the process.
C-PACE uses a voluntary special property assessment to facilitate energy and other improvements in commercial buildings. For example:
- Long financing terms under C-PACE can produce cash flow-positive projects to help overcome a focus on short paybacks.
- Payment obligations can transfer to subsequent owners, mitigating concern about investing in improvements for a building that may be sold before the return on the investment is fully realized.
- 100% of both hard and soft costs can be financed.