The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) congratulates the City of Fort Collins, Colorado, for being one of nine winners in Bloomberg Philanthropies' 2018 U.S. Mayors Challenge. Fort Collins’s EPIC Loan program for residential energy upgrades was awarded a $1 million prize from Bloomberg Philanthropies. Its innovative, on-bill financing-based approach aims to provide health and equity benefits for low- and moderate-income renters by improving the energy efficiency and indoor air quality of rental homes.

Residential property owners can take advantage of the EPIC Program’s easy, streamlined steps to make their homes more comfortable, healthy and efficient. EPIC loans offer attractive financing for these projects, repaid on the owner’s portion of the utility bill (on-bill financing), with capital delivered via private sector partners. Fort Collins will also work with Colorado State University to document the health and well-being benefits of improved indoor air quality over time.

"EESI is proud to support Fort Collins in its efforts to scale the EPIC loan model across Colorado, in collaboration with the Colorado Energy Office," said EESI Program Associate Miguel Yanez. "Fort Collins is leveraging EESI’s on-bill financing project resources, including our How-to Guide: Launching an On-Bill Financing Program, as well as our case studies of on-bill programs around the country. EESI and Fort Collins are jointly developing an online guide and related resources that will be available for other cities and municipal utilities in Colorado and across the United States that wish to operate their own 'EPIC-style' on-bill financing program."

The Mayors Challenge was a year-long competition between 324 American cities that challenged local leaders to uncover and test bold, inventive ideas to confront the toughest problems faced by cities today. Co-chaired by Ambassador Caroline Kennedy (Japan, 2013–2017) and former Xerox Chairman & CEO Ursula Burns, the Mayors Challenge selection committee was comprised of policy experts, artists, academics, business executives, and social innovation leaders. The committee evaluated the cities' applications based on their idea's vision, potential for impact, implementation plan, and potential to scale to other cities.