Darien lending firm in partnership to increase commercial renewable-energy investments

By Kevin Zimmerman

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Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing firms Greenworks Lending and Renovate America have announced a national partnership to spur efficiency and renewable-energy investments on commercial buildings.

Under the agreement, Darien-based Greenworks Lending and Renovate America of San Diego will begin offering commercial PACE financing through the HERO program in Missouri. The HERO (Home Energy Renovation Opportunity) program falls under the auspices of PACE, which provides financing for energy-efficient, water-efficient and renewable energy products to home and business owners in approved communities within California and Missouri; it is expected to expand to Florida this year.

The partnership will expand to other HERO markets as the program grows around the country. Greenworks Lending currently offers commercial PACE in Connecticut, Maryland, Rhode Island, Ohio, Texas and the District of Columbia.

PACE financing, which has been approved in some form in more than 30 states and the District of Columbia, allows owners to access upfront financing for clean energy and efficiency improvements to their properties. Commercial PACE investment has doubled every year since its inception in 2009 and is continuing to accelerate with 380 percent growth in the last quarter of 2016 compared to the same period of 2015, according to PACE policy advocacy organization PACENation.

According to Renovate America, HERO is the leading residential PACE program in the U.S., having financed more than $2.1 billion of home improvements in partnership with local governments. HERO is on track to save its customers nearly $3.5 billion in energy and water bills, and has created over 18,000 local jobs that cannot be offshored or automated, the firm said.

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