Green Revolving Loan Fund

Green Revolving Loan Fund

Green Revolving Loan Fund Cover Photo The Green Revolving Loan Fund is a $300,000 fund for energy and resource conservation projects at Middlebury College, providing money for campus projects that have quantifiable savings and which meet return on investment criteria. Savings created by these successful projects are reinvested back into the fund until the loan is paid in full plus one additional payment, enabling the fund to grow and finance more projects.


Frequently Asked Questions

Who can use the fund?
Any student, faculty, or staff member can apply to use the fund provided they have the support of any department that would be responsible for carrying out the proposed project and repaying the loan from savings.

What can the fund be used for?
Successful loan projects will reduce annual operating expenses, decrease greenhouse-gas emissions, decrease energy costs, and engage students, staff, and faculty in the effort to reduce energy use and raise environmental awareness. It is intended that the energy savings will be utilized to repay the loans, however applicants must commit to set payment schedules.

How is the fund managed?
A committee reviews loan applications, verifies payback analysis, and prepares applications for review by the Middlebury Revolving Loan Fund Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee, consisting of the director of sustainability integration, the director of facilities, the director of the budget office, the director of business services, students, and a faculty member, reviews and recommends the appropriate action to the vice president of finance. The Advisory Committee also manages the loan fund balance and determines appropriate loan criteria to maintain a positive balance in the loan fund.

What are the loan criteria?

  • Maximum award quantity
    $300,000 total is available for projects in the first year.
  • Minimum award amount
    Loan requests should be at least $5,000 or greater.
  • Maximum single award amount
    There is no set maximum loan amount. The maximum single loan amount in the first year is anticipated to be about $100,000. Future year loan restrictions will be based upon the success of past projects, the quantity of loan applications, the total amount of loans, and the funding available.
  • Duration of the loan
    Projects should be completed within two years. No projects may be proposed that cannot be completed within two years from the loan approval.
  • Payback criteria or loan criteria
    Projects that pay back in five years and less are preferred. Longer payback periods will be considered. Projects can be bundled to accomplish an average payback period in the five or less range as well (e.g., a 2-year payback and a 7-year payback for comparable loan amounts would average a 4.5-year payback).

Is there interest on loans?
Loan recipients will be required to make one additional payment in the year following payback of the loan. Ninety percent of the last payment will be used to increase the amount of funding available. Ten percent will go into a discretionary fund for the department (in most cases facilities) to spend on sustainable initiatives such as professional development.

Where do the continued savings go once the loan is paid back?
It is expected that most projects will generate savings on utility bills paid by facilities (since departments do not pay their own utility bills). Once the loan is paid off, 10 percent of the additional savings will go into a discretionary fund to be used by the department (facilities in most cases) for sustainable initiatives such as professional development for two years after the loan is paid back. The remainder of the savings will go into Middlebury College’s general fund.

Who determines what the payback is?
The applicant needs to include a preliminary payback analysis as part of the application. The director of sustainability integration will review the likely project payback and will provide a final payback analysis for determination of funding. The Advisory Committee will make the final recommendation on loan awards. For projects that involve electricity savings applicants should consult with Tim Perrin, Middlebury’s representative at Efficiency Vermont. They can provide expertise and monitoring/verification assistance in many cases.

Can payback be aggregated?
For projects with several identifiable components, payback may be aggregated to meet the total project payback criteria.

Can I change out capital project funding for deferred maintenance with a loan?
Not at this time. New construction and major remodeling projects will not initially be eligible for funding.

Can the Revolving Loan Fund be used to fund feasibility studies?
The fund does not make loans to do feasibility studies. However, if an applicant is applying for a loan to do a project for which a feasibility study has been done, they may include the cost of the study in the loan amount to recover the cost of the study if the project is successful in receiving a loan.

How often can someone apply?
Applicants may apply as often as they wish. However, no one applicant may have more than two projects in design and/or construction at any one time. Exceptions may be made if requests for funding are below the announced funding available in any single loan application cycle.

How to Apply

To propose a project, please download this application form, complete it according to these instructions, and submit it to Jack Byrne, director of the Office of Sustainability Integration. The Advisory Committee meets as needed to review applications. Questions can be directed to the director of the Sustainability Integration Office at 802-443-5043 or