Here's how it works
We start by meeting with you to discuss the challenges of your buildings and your goals for energy savings
Your buildings are assessed for energy and water savings potential, and we can help you find a contractor to handle installations.
We are available to help you make the case for project financing that will deliver returns for building owners and investors.
The work is completed, with oversight from Commons Energy. Those who live, work, or visit the building experience improved comfort and safety. Building owners and managers obtain energy savings.
We are ready to take your project from start to finish. Connect
A model that benefits all
Commons Energy, a public-purpose energy services company (or PPESCO), is an innovative take on a tested model, providing engineering services to achieve energy savings that are used to repay investors on project financing.
Frequently asked questions
- What makes a project a good fit with Commons Energy? Are there limitations, (such as types of building, size of project, and/or geography)?
- If I have already had an energy audit done, will I need another one? If I do, who pays for it?
- If I already have electrical and HVAC contractors or in-house staff who know my building, can I use them?
- What exactly is an Energy Performance Contract?
- What is guaranteed in the Energy Performance Contract? What is not?
- How quickly can we get started?
- We’re ready when you are. And the best time for us to get involved is right at the beginning, as part of the design team! The ideal project is one in which Commons Energy is included at the outset of a project as part of the design team. However, for projects that are already in the development cycle and/or existing projects, we are able to integrate into the timeline by working with the existing team to assemble supplemental resource and review facility and tenant utility bills. We will then perform an energy audit and energy model, provide calculated savings of the facility and determine the cost, effectiveness and therefore suitability of energy improvement measures (including both energy efficiency and on site renewable generation) for the facility.
- Is Commons Energy a for-profit or non-profit organization?
- Commons Energy is an L3C (low-profit limited liability company) which is a form of the broader category of LLCs (limited liability corporations). An L3C is a for-profit organizational structure that balances social and financial returns, whereas a traditional LLC, S-corp or C-corp all favor financial returns as the primary objective. We created Commons Energy as an L3C to provide benefits to the community—equally as important to providing a steady financial return to socially minded financing partners. Learn more about the L3C legal designation. To see if your state is one of the nine states or two tribal nations where it is legally possible to organize as an L3C, see our map.
- What is the relationship between a Public Purpose Energy Services Company (PPESCO), Commons Energy and the Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC)?
- A PPESCO is a type of energy-services company that provides whole-building energy improvements to buildings that lack access to such services, and that exist to serve a public purpose. Based on this, the four market sectors that Commons Energy serves are: Multifamily affordable housing, Municipal/Community, Education and Health Care. The PPESCO model originated more than twenty years ago through various projects completed by the Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC) and other organizations who share similar interests. VEIC recognized the need for this concept in the rural, suburban, and urban environments in which it operated: specifically that any public-purpose building is just too small to be profitable for large-scale energy services, and yet they are too large or complex for utility efficiency programs that have limited funds. Fast forward to the present day and VEIC has created a wholly owned subsidiary titled Commons Energy L3C to meet this market need and to improve the comfort, safety, and efficiency of public-purpose buildings by lowering overhead costs and creating positive cash flow.