With support from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation, the Environmental Finance Center is working in partnership with the North Carolina On-Bill Working Group to provide education, support and other resources to rural cooperative utilities to expand energy efficiency opportunities across the state.
The Environmental Finance Center, Appalachian Voices, and the Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance (SEEA), in collaboration with the North Carolina On-Bill Finance Working Group—which also includes Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy (SACE), and the Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC)—will work with electric member cooperatives in North Carolina to provide the education and support resources needed to establish on-bill energy efficiency programs.
On-bill energy efficiency programs cover the upfront cost of energy efficiency retrofits, which customers then repay on their monthly bills using a portion of the realized savings. For a residential customer, this is comparable to a no- or low-interest loan that allows them to pay for energy efficiency improvements in their home, such as improved insulation, more efficient heating and cooling systems, and duct sealing. The on-bill model removes the significant cost barrier for making energy efficiency upgrades; ideally, the savings achieved as a result of the improvements exceed the loan payment over time.
Through this project, the EFC and the NC On-Bill Finance Working Group will:
- Develop and deliver a series of educational trainings on the basics of on-bill program design options for NC electric member cooperatives and stakeholders
- Provide training, consulting, and technical assistance to electric cooperatives in NC to support establishment of on-bill financing programs
- Create a toolkit of on-bill program planning and development resources