What is the Green EDGE Fund?
The Green EDGE Fund finances environmental projects on the Oberlin College campus and (occasionally) in the Oberlin community. The EDGE Fund is administered by a Board of one faculty member and five students, including one Student Senator.
The Fund can support two different types of projects: efficiency loans and sustainability grants. The efficiency loans are given for projects that have clear and timely financial paybacks into the fund. The efficiency loans are not like a standard bank loan, where the borrower pays back with interest; our “loans” are rather paid back by the energy savings due to the funded projects. (For instance, we’ve installed water heater jackets whose natural gas savings will return to our coffers.)
The sustainability grants do not have any payback requirements. We expect them to be used without recovering any of our investment. These projects include anything that protects the environment but whose savings aren’t easily quantifiable: covered bike racks, organic fertilizers to replace petroleum pesticides, community renovation programs. (For instance, we’ve funded the innovative POWER Fund that renovates houses and reduces energy bills for low-income community members.)
We have these two types of projects because we have have two funding sources. Part of our funding comes from the college administration, which has asked us to only invest in projects with clear financial paybacks (the efficiency loans). The other part of our funding comes from activity fees paid by the student body, which supported using the funding for sustainability projects in general (the sustainability grants).
If a proposal could receive either source of funding, we will give it much higher priority as an efficiency loan than as a sustainability grant. We prefer projects with a revenue stream that can fund more proposals in the future.
Want to apply for funding? Email us to get the conversation started. Check out our lists of past proposals and take a look at our template for writing new proposals. See if you meet our list of funding priorities. We’re excited to hear from you and help you transform this campus!