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Energy Finance, Energy Data: Big Tasks for EDF Climate Fellows

October 3, 2013 By Linda Hardesty

Energy Manage Olive GardenThe Environmental Defense Fund’s Climate Corps advanced energy management at 106 organizations across the nation this summer, and EDF says data management was a growth area as organizations struggle to make sense of the massive amounts of data collected by new technologies. More than 60 percent of this year’s participants report to have tasked EDF Climate Corps fellows with complex data analysis to identify energy-saving solutions.

Each summer, EDF Climate Corps trains and matches graduate students with organizations to deliver energy savings. On average, fellows in the EDF’s Climate Corps have found $1 million in energy-saving opportunities for host organizations.

In its sixth year, EDF Climate Corps has found nearly $1.3 billion in energy savings for participating organizations. This year’s list includes Apple, Facebook, General Motors and Verizon from the private sector, and the US Army, Chicago Public Schools and the cities of Boston and Austin from the public sector.

Innovative efficiency financing solutions are also increasingly popular for both public and private organizations. EDF Climate Corps fellows focused on crafting financing solutions – like green revolving loan funds – to enable increasing investment in energy projects over time.

EDF Climate Corps helped the City of Boston evaluate new ways to fund energy efficiency, including ways in which it can build higher levels of efficiency into its capital construction projects.

The EDF Climate Corps fellow at Darden Restaurants helped the company with its goal to reduce its energy usage by 15 percent by 2015. The fellow helped identify the most strategic investments Darden should consider for its over 2,100 restaurant locations, including Red Lobster and Olive Garden restaurants. The fellow was able to identify the two most effective technologies that could reduce energy use and save almost $20 million, according to Darden.

EDF Climate Corps is now accepting applications for companies, cities and universities to host a fellow in 2014.



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