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Sustainability Initiatives

BCC’s sustainability initiatives develop financing tools and web platforms for energy conservation, energy efficiency and renewable energy investments, primarily for the affordable housing and non-profit sectors.  For years, affordable housing developments have been built or rehabbed with limited “first cost budgets” that typically trade off lower development costs for higher life-cycle costs.  Today, these properties have higher operating and utility expenses, are less durable and create less-healthy living environments.

Our aim is to improve building energy and environmental performance, stabilize and lower affordable housing developments’ operating expenses, and create opportunities for low-income communities to address climate change, use energy more wisely and benefit from the adoption of renewable energy technologies.

Initiatives:

  • BCC Solar
  • WegoWise

Helping the Greater Boston Food Bank Save $20,000 Each Year With Solar Energy

"Every dollar we save means we can feed more people. It’s that simple,” says Catherine D’Amato, president and CEO of The Greater Boston Food Bank.

See Impact Study ››

 

BCC Solar

BCC has worked since 2008 to help low-income communities gain access to the cost savings and price stability of solar power and participate in efforts to address climate change.  We develop and own photovoltaic systems— almost 7 megawatts (MWs) of solar capacity across 30 Massachusetts projects.  These projects primarily serve affordable, multifamily housing developments.  We also have projects that serve non-profit organizations and municipal facilities, such as the Greater Boston Food Bank.

BCC provides all the upfront capital for the panels and installations, captures the value of significant solar tax credit incentives, and ensures that the systems are designed and operated to maximize the solar electricity generation--overcoming three barriers many low-income customers face in adopting this clean technology.

Impact:

By switching to solar, our customers get access to fixed-cost, low-price electricity that also benefits the environment.

With over 27,160 panels installed, our systems will:

  • Generate 8.36 million kilowatt hours of solar electricity annually
  • Provide over $12 million in savings to customers over the life of the panels
  • Reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 3,652 tons every year

This is comparable to cutting car travel by 8 million miles a year and equivalent to the energy needed to power 1,000 homes annually.

View The Map

For more information:

If you are interested in learning about how you might finance solar panels on your project, contact Dick Jones at djones@bostoncommunitycapital.org.

 

WegoWise

In seeking to enhance the economic resilience and environmental sustainability of affordable housing, Boston Community Capital co-founded WegoWise, an online tool for monitoring and analyzing the water and energy use of residential and commercial buildings.


Bridging big data and energy efficiency, WegoWise distills large aggregations of utility data into useful, actionable information for building owners, managers, energy auditors and building efficiency programs, enabling them to automatically track, understand and benchmark building performance, and make better efficiency investment decisions. This innovative and low cost service allows owners of affordable housing to save staff time and reduce utility spending, all while cutting carbon.


Impact:

WegoWise is helping buildings across the country cut carbon and save money. WegoWise tracks buildings in all 50 states. The platform is the largest multifamily benchmarking database in the country, tracking more than:

  • 49,000 buildings
  • 2.1 billion square feet
  • 8.4 million utility bills

In Massachusetts, WegoWise partnered with MassSave’s LEAN Program, delivering tracking services to over 430 different affordable housing organizations and over 207,000 low-income residents. Using WegoWise, program administrators identified over 12 million Therms in gas savings and over 165 million kWh in electric savings.

For more information: