Sept. 2, 2010

Loan fund can help departments achieve green goals

by Paula Van Brocklin

With so many environmentally conscious initiatives taking place across campus, don't let the Live Green revolving loan fund opportunity get lost in the shuffle. Can't recall what it's about? Here's a quick refresher. Detailed information about the fund, its requirements and recently completed projects also are online.

What it is: The $1 million fund, established in 2008 by president Gregory Geoffroy, provides interest-free loans for ISU projects that promote energy conservation and sustainability. The projects, initiated by departments/units, must show a return on investment, reduce annual operating expenses, decrease greenhouse gas emissions and lower energy costs.

Eligible projects: Any university department may participate in the loan fund. No idea is considered too small (see project ideas). The maximum loan amount is $100,000. Projects should be completed in one year. Since the fund was established, 15 projects have been completed.

Repayment: Annual loan repayments begin one year following the approved project's completion. Departments must repay the loan with the project's savings, which helps fund future initiatives. The entire loan must be repaid within five years. If the project's savings does not cover the cost of the loan, the department must make up the difference.

How to apply: Applications are available online. The applying department must have approval from its chair before submitting an application. Following approval, the application should be sent to the Live Green loan fund committee, 108 General Services Building. The committee will review the application and respond within 30 days.

Progress reports: Once a project is approved and under way, the department must provide semiannual progress reports to the loan fund committee until the loan is repaid.