The Challenge


The Billion Dollar Green Challenge (The Challenge) encourages colleges, universities, and other nonprofit institutions to invest a combined total of one billion dollars in self-managed revolving funds that finance energy efficiency improvements. Participating institutions will achieve reductions in operating expenses and greenhouse gas emissions, while creating regenerating funds for future projects.

The Sustainable Endowments Institute, in collaboration with 16 partner organizations, has launched The Challenge to help nonprofit institutions achieve sizable energy savings through the use of green revolving funds.

Green revolving funds invest in energy efficiency projects to reduce energy consumption on campus and reinvest the money saved in future projects. The reason they are called “revolving funds” is because the funds loan money to specific projects, which then repay the loan through an internal account transfer from savings achieved in the institution’s utilities budget.

One Page Summary

Download a brief summary that explains The Challenge including partners and funders.


Advisory Council


The Billion Dollar Green Challenge is guided by a distinguished and diverse 26-member Advisory Council.

Jenn Andrews
Clean Air – Cool Planet
Greg Kats
Capital E

Carter Bales
NewWorld Capital Group
Julian Keniry
National Wildlife Federation – Campus Ecology

Beth Bogart
Progressive Source Communications
Elizabeth Kiss
Agnes Scott College

Blaine Collison
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – Green Power Partnership

…  David Kopans
Tony Cortese
Second Nature
Jonathan Lash
Hampshire College

Felicia Davis
Building Green Initiative
Judy Nitsch
Nitsch Engineering

Douglas I. Foy
Serrafix Corporation

John Onderdonk
David Hales
American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment; Second Nature

David Orr
Oberlin College
Heather Henriksen
Harvard University
Louisa Plotnick
Clinton Climate Initiative

Janet Howard
Practice Greenhealth
Debra Rowe
U.S. Partnership for Education for Sustainable Development

Robert Hutchinson
Rocky Mountain Institute

Leith Sharp
Scott Johnstone
Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC)

Gus Speth
Vermont Law School
Van Jones
Rebuild the Dream
Dano Weisbord

ActionAid International







Individual Donors


In addition to generous support from our funders and sponsors, we would like to thank the following individual donors:

  • John Chandler
  • Neva Goodwin
  • Scott McDonald
  • Peter O’Neill
  • Tiffany Schauer
  • Anonymous Donors