California Institute of Technology


Caltech Energy Conservation Investment Program (CECIP)

The Caltech Energy Conservation Investment Program (CECIP) is the process by which the California Institute of Technology’s (Caltech’s) endowment, via the Capital Revolving Fund, is used to finance energy conservation projects and is then reimbursed from avoided utility costs that result from the implementation of the projects. CECIP was created in 2008 in response to a call to action issued by a committee of faculty, staff, students and post-docs who authored Caltech’s Climate Action Plan.

All projects must have a return on investment greater than 15%, exhibit verifiable savings via metering and must not be part of a planned capital project. From an initial allocation of $25,000, CECIP’s allocation has grown to roughly $8,000,000, which at its projected peak will finance over $30,000,000 in energy conservation measures.

CECIP’s focus on effective project selection, detailed training, a rigorous system of checks and balances and an emphasis on measurable results, has enabled Caltech to effectively embed energy conservation into the organization.


The higher education participants in The Challenge are managed by Second Nature. To learn more about how Second Nature plans to expand use of GRFs in higher education, visit their page!

Founding Circle


Pasadena, California

Green Revolving
Fund Size





John Onderdonk
Manager for Sustainability Programs