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In a recent episode of ESG Insider: A Podcast by S&P Global, they explored the role that green banks can play in closing the funding gap between the amount of investment needed to make the climate transition happen and what is occuring today. In the episode, they interview Reed Hundt, co-founder, chairman and CEO of the Coalition for Green Capital, which has helped organize a number of green banks and is pressing the U.S. Congress to create a federal green bank, and Connecticut Green Bank President and CEO Bryan Garcia.
In a recent opinion piece published by Newsweek, Mark Sommer and Michael H. Shuman discussed the revolution in local investment through smaller denominations, and how this is helping combat climate change. Michael H. Shuman is an economist, attorney, entrepreneur, adjunct professor at Bard Business School and author; Mark Sommer is an award-winning syndicated print and broadcast media journalist.
Successfully proving the impact of the Green Bank model for a decade, recent scope expansion led by Governor Lamont approved through bipartisan legislative action
Hartford, CT (July 7, 2021) – The Connecticut Green Bank is marking ten years of its model successfully enabling progress towards its goal of confronting climate change by mobilizing private investment into the state’s green economy. The Green Bank’s model demonstrates how the smart investment of public funds can mobilize more private investment in the state’s economy. Over the last decade, the Green Bank and its partners have deployed nearly $2.3 billion in capital for clean energy projects across the state. Projects recorded through FY 2020 show that for every $1 of public funds committed by the Green Bank that nearly an additional $8 in private investment occurred in the economy. As a result, Green Bank supported projects have created thousands of jobs in our communities, reduced the energy burden on thousands of families and businesses, avoided millions of tons of greenhouse gas emissions, and facilitated rapid growth in the deployment of clean energy.
Established on July 1, 2011, by Governor Dannel Malloy and the General Assembly, the Connecticut Green Bank was the first of its kind in the United States. While the landscape of the green economy has changed significantly, Connecticut continues to serve as the model for other green banks, as well as proposals on the national level.
“As we mark our 10th anniversary, we are motivated by the leadership and commitment from Governor Lamont and the continued support of the Legislature, demonstrated by the recent expansion of our mission,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank. “This is an endorsement of the green bank model, which has successfully invested public resources to mobilize multiples of private capital investment into our green economy over the last decade. Since a similar need exists regarding private investment into modernizing Connecticut’s environmental infrastructure, we look forward to taking on this new role.”
Some recent Connecticut Green Bank program highlights include:
For more information on Connecticut Green Bank’s programs visit website at www.ctgreenbank.com.
The Connecticut Green Bank proudly announces the July webinars in their 2021 “Promoting the Renewable Energy of Community” webinar series.
On Thursday, July 8, at 12 pm, the session will be “Energy Affordability: Obstacles & Solutions.” Energy affordability is a pressing issue, consistently affecting household budgets in Connecticut and the region. Join experts in breaking down programs and resources addressing high residential energy costs, obstacles that customers face in accessing solutions, and efforts to improve outcomes in Connecticut, including through empowerment initiatives in disadvantaged communities.
On Thursday, July 22, at 12 pm, join the Green Bank and special guests for a webinar titled “History of Environmental Justice in America and the Frontlines of Climate Justice Today in Connecticut.” Keynote remarks will be presented by Deeohn Ferris, President of the Institute for Sustainable Communities, on the history of Executive Order 12898 “Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations” signed by President Clinton on February 11, 1994.
To register for these sessions or access recordings of previous sessions visit https://www.ctgreenbank.com/2021webinarseries/.
Connecticut Green Bank’s lower-dollar denomination bond received strong support from individual buyers in Connecticut and across the country as well as from institutional buyers
Hartford, CT (April 23, 2021) – In celebration of the 51st Earth Day, the Connecticut Green Bank issued its second Green Liberty Bonds to retail and institutional investors, and sold out of nearly $25 million in bonds over two days. This builds upon a successful, award-winning 2020 issuance which sold nearly $17 million of bonds last July. With nearly $100 million in orders, demand this year was again greater than the supply of bonds could satisfy, showing the high-level of interest in supporting investment to confront climate change in Connecticut.
Retail investors were given priority during a one-day retail order period on Wednesday, April 21. Total retail orders received during this order period surpassed $20 million. With first priority given to Connecticut citizen investors, their orders for nearly $12 million of bonds were filled before approximately $9 million from national orders. Institutional orders topped $77 million.
“The demand for the Earth Day 2021 issuance of the Green Liberty Bonds was so strong, that we had nearly four times as much demand as we had available. We saw incredible demand from retail investors in Connecticut and across the country, and enthusiastic institutional investors seeking to invest in confronting climate change in Connecticut,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Green Bank.
Individuals accounted for 57% of the retail orders with the balance from professionally managed retail accounts such as private wealth managers and bank trusts.
Institutional investors were able to place orders on April 22, and there was strong interest from a variety of traditional municipal investors and Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) investors attracted by the issuance’s strong climate bonds certification standards. The overall interest cost dropped to 2.42% from the 2.61% achieved for the inaugural bonds issued last July, notwithstanding a significant rise in longer term interest rates.
“In two years, the Green Bank has issued more than $80 million in verified climate bonds to support residential solar PV and energy efficiency in Connecticut. The overwhelming response by investors to our latest bond offering as well as the pricing achieved signifies broad acceptance of the Connecticut Green Bank as an issuer,” noted Bert Hunter, the Green Bank’s Chief Investment Officer.
The use of proceeds from this issuance supports incentives for nearly 7,000 households and 60 megawatts of residential solar photovoltaic systems, totaling nearly $220 million of investment in projects in 165 cities and towns across the state, which created over 2,100 jobs.
The Green Liberty Bonds were created in honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day – a type of green bond whose proceeds are used to invest in projects that confront climate change in Connecticut. Modelled after the Series-E War Bonds of the 1940s, the bonds must be able to be purchased by everyday citizens through lower-dollar denominations (no more than $1,000), enabling them to invest in green projects in their community and to save for the planet.
To offer the Green Liberty Bonds, the Green Bank worked with Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. as lead underwriter, Ramirez & Co., Inc. as co-underwriter, Shipman & Goodwin LLP as bond counsel, Lamont Financial Services Corporation as financial advisor, and Bank of New York Mellon Trust Company, N.A. as trustee. The Green Liberty Bonds, state supported using a special capital reserve fund, received an A rating from Standard and Poor’s. They were labeled as “Certified Climate Bonds” by the Climate Bonds Initiative, and compliance of the bond’s issuance with the Climate Bonds Standards was verified by Kestrel Verifiers. Support from the staffs of the Office of the State Treasurer and of the Office of Policy and Management was also instrumental.
“The Green Liberty Bonds were a huge success with the investor community. Investors liked the credit and were also attracted by the opportunity to invest in Certified Climate Bonds,” said Eric McKean, Managing Director of Stifel.
Encouraged by these first two issuances, the Green Bank anticipates offering Green Liberty Bonds annually around Earth Day. To stay informed about future issuances, please sign up for notifications at www.greenlibertybonds.com.
About the Connecticut Green Bank
The Connecticut Green Bank was established by the Connecticut General Assembly in 2011 as the nation’s first green bank. The Green Bank’s mission is to confront climate change and provide all of society a healthier, more prosperous future by increasing and accelerating the flow of private capital into markets that energize the green economy. This is accomplished by leveraging limited public resources to scale-up and mobilize private capital investment into Connecticut. In 2017, the Connecticut Green Bank received the Innovations in American Government Award from the Harvard Kennedy School Ash Center for Democratic Governance and innovation for their “Sparking the Green Bank Movement” entry. For more information about the Connecticut Green Bank, please visit www.ctgreenbank.com
This press release does not constitute a recommendation or an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security or other financial instrument, including Green Liberty Bonds, or to adopt any investment strategy. Any offer or solicitation with respect to Green Liberty Bonds will be made solely by means of the Preliminary Official Statement and Official Statement, which will describe the actual terms and conditions of the Green Liberty Bonds. The information provided is subject in all respects to the information presented in the complete Preliminary Official Statement prepared in connection with Green Liberty Bonds. Any investment decisions regarding any of the Green Liberty Bonds should only be made after a careful review of the complete Preliminary Official Statement.
The Cool Solutions podcast recently featured three stories about the power of community to raise and multiply funding for climate action. 1. A town taxes itself for free transit. 2. Communities crowdfund for composting (and more). 3. The Connecticut Green Bank spurs 400 MW of solar.
Storytellers: Robert Pollin - Political Economy Research Institute; Clark Gilman - Mayor ProTem Olympia, WA; Ann Freeman Manzanares - InterCity Transit; Abe Salorio- Sustainable CT; and Bryan Garcia - Connecticut Green Ban
Building upon the success of the 2020 issuance, the Connecticut Green Bank’s lower-dollar denomination bond is designed to encourage individuals to invest to confront climate change; Webinar April 15
Hartford, CT (April 10, 2021) – The Connecticut Green Bank is proud to announce its 2021 Green Liberty Bond issuance, which is anticipated to be available to retail and institutional investors on or about April 21, 2021. Green Liberty Bonds are lower-dollar denomination bonds (offered in $1,000 increments), making it easier for individual investors to consider an investment. The bond proceeds will be independently certified as financing infrastructure projects with climate and environmental benefits that will help strengthen our state’s green energy economy and create much needed jobs.
This is the Green Bank’s second Green Liberty Bond release, and builds upon the success of the July 2020 issuance, which raised $16,795,000 from retail and institutional investors in Connecticut and across the country. Retail demand was so strong that the supply of bonds could not meet the interest of those seeking to invest.
“We were very pleased by the response to our 2020 issuance of Green Liberty Bonds. In the midst of a global pandemic with so much uncertainty, the support of this new sub-category of green bonds that helps confront climate change was overwhelming,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank. “We hope even more retail investors in Connecticut and nationwide are able to invest in green infrastructure with us this year.”
Retail investors’ orders will be given first priority. Investors must have an account with one of the brokerage firms participating in the bond sale, or with another firm that can place an order through a brokerage firm participating in the bond sale. Interested retail investors who do not have a brokerage account should contact lead bond underwriter Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. or co-underwriter Ramirez & Co., Inc. to begin the process of opening a new account. Visit https://www.ctgreenbank.com/how-to-buy-green-liberty-bonds for their contact information.
To help inform residents about the Green Bank’s mission and programs, including the 2021 Green Liberty Bond, the Green Bank will host a webinar on Thursday, April 15 from 7 – 8 pm. (register here: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5920454914183848720). The Preliminary Official Statement, notifications and bond information can be found at www.greenlibertybonds.com.
Modeled after the World War II Series-E bonds, which were purchased by more than 80 million Americans, Green Liberty Bonds are an opportunity for investors to take on the shared challenge of climate change and green infrastructure investment through the purchase of bonds. In November 2020, the Green Liberty Bond was honored by The Bond Buyer as the winner of Deal of the Year in the Innovative Financing category.
Like the previous issuance, these Green Liberty Bonds are expected to be labeled “Certified Climate Bonds” by the Climate Bonds Initiative, and compliance of the bond’s issuance with the Climate Bonds Standards will be verified by Kestrel Verifiers.
Continuing our 2021 free webinar series Promoting the Renewable Energy of Community, we are pleased to announce our April webinars.
More information and registration links available here:** https://www.ctgreenbank.com/2021webinarseries/**
The Connecticut Green Bank announces its 2021 “Promoting the Renewable Energy of Community” webinar series. Over the next year, these webinars will feature Green Bank staff and special guests speaking on topics such as clean energy policy, financial innovation, social justice and cleantech advances. The webinar series involves Connecticut Innovations as a technology partner, and the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority (PURA) as a regulatory partner exploring innovative regulatory structures to support the implementation of public policy.
The “Energy Trends and Transformations” webinar will start the series on Tuesday, March 2, from 12 to 1:30 pm. Katherine Hamilton, co-host of popular podcast The Energy Gang, will lead a conversation exploring the rapidly shifting U.S. policy and business landscape for clean energy, cleantech and climate. From the Biden Administration to Congress, attendees will learn what policy movements are underway, and what these changes mean for states and for clean energy project activity.
More information on the series and registration links can be found here: https://www.ctgreenbank.com/2021webinarseries/
Climate & Capital Media recently covered our 2020 Green Liberty Bond issuance in an article title "Tapping into World War II success for climate finance." Read the article here.
The Connecticut Green Bank recently released its Fiscal Year 2020 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR) (https://www.ctgreenbank.com/about-us/financial-statements/), which is compiled by the Green Bank's accounting team and audited by an external certified public accounting firm in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. The CAFR offers a deep dive into the financial performance of the Green Bank. The Green Bank also recently released its FY202 Annual Report (https://www.ctgreenbank.com/fy20-annual-report/), which provides updates on the programs, shares success stories and milestones, and offers a look at the impact of the inaugural Green Liberty Bond issuance in 2020.
November 10, 2020 — The Bond Buyer announced yesterday that the Connecticut Green Bank is among the recipients of its annual Deal of the Year awards as the winner in the Innovative Financing category for their 2020 Green Liberty Bond issuance.
For the second straight year, The Bond Buyer has named winners in 10 categories: five awards in our regional areas of coverage, along with five in additional categories. All award winners are also finalists for the national Deal of the Year Award, which will be announced at a virtual event to be held Dec. 16. This is the 19th year that The Bond Buyer has recognized outstanding achievement in municipal finance.
“This year’s lineup reflects the full range of communities and public purposes this market comprises,” said Mike Scarchilli, Editor in Chief of The Bond Buyer. “The deals honored exemplify the creativity and resourcefulness this industry brings to bear on projects that advance the infrastructure and quality of life in the nation’s municipalities. These qualities take on additional importance here in 2020, as issuers across the nation face unprecedented challenges.”
The Bond Buyer’s editorial board considered a range of factors when judging entries, including: creativity, the ability to pull a complex transaction together under challenging conditions, the ability to serve as a model for other financings, and the public purpose for which a deal’s proceeds were used.
“We are very excited and honored to be recognized by The Bond Buyer in the Innovative Financing category for 2020,” said Lonnie Reed, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Connecticut Green Bank. “Issuing our first Green Liberty Bond during the COVID-19 pandemic presented unique challenges, however, the response from retail investors in Connecticut and across the country was incredibly positive. The desire to invest in Green Liberty Bonds is strong because it is both great for the environment and great for the green energy economy.”
The Connecticut Green Bank’s $16.8 million issuance of “Green Liberty Bonds” is this year’s Innovative Financing winner. Modeled after the Series-E War Bonds of the 1940s, this new sub-category of green bonds is sold in maximum denominations of $1,000, making them accessible to everyday citizens and retail investors.
To see all the finalists, please visit The Bond Buyer’s announcement.
"Connecting capital to projects that reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is at the core of our struggle against climate change," says Bryan Garcia, Green Bank president and CEO in a commentary published by The Bond Buyer. The Green Liberty Bond was created with this goal in mind, and to allow retail investors and concerned citizens to put their dollars behind green projects.
In the Summer 2020 issue of Environmental Finance, Connecticut Green Bank President and CEO Bryan Garcia and Chief Investment Officer Bert Hunter discuss how Green Liberty Bonds "marry capitalism and civic virtue to help fund the state’s response to climate change."
Earlier this week, CSG EAST’s Energy and Environment Committee hosted a virtual discussion with officials at the Connecticut Green Bank, to learn about the first-ever lower denomination bond that is enabling citizens to invest in efforts to address climate change.
Green Liberty Bonds, offered in $1,000 denominations to individuals as well as institutional investors, are intended to fund projects that will further a number of broad societal goals as states work to decarbonize their energy systems, such as strengthening communities, promoting environmental justice and inclusivity, and advancing market transformation in green investing.
Connecticut Green Bank’s lower-dollar denomination bond received strong support from individual buyers in Connecticut and across the country as well as from institutional buyers
Earlier this month, the Connecticut Green Bank successfully sold-out of its inaugural Green Liberty Bond offering of $16,795,000 to retail and institutional investors in Connecticut and across the country. Demand was so strong that the supply of bonds could not meet the interest of those seeking to invest in Connecticut’s green economy.
Retail investors were given priority during a one-day retail order period on Tuesday, July 14. Total retail orders received during this order period surpassed $9.9 million. With first priority given to Connecticut citizen investors, their orders for nearly $5 million of bonds were filled before the national orders. Due to heavy volume of interest seeking the first two maturities, the Green Bank was only able to fill $1 million of the national retail order.
“When we conceived of the idea of the Green Liberty Bond, we wanted to develop a type of green investment that would enable everyday citizens to invest in confronting climate change,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank. “Green bonds now have a new sub-category – a bond sold directly to the people the proceeds of which are independently certified as financing projects with climate and environmental benefits. We invite other issuers to use the Green Liberty Bond structure and help fulfill the demand of our American investors.”
Article from The Bond Buyer:
Connecticut Green Bank, the nation’s first state-level green bank, plans to launch its Green Liberty Bonds next week.
The Rocky Hill-based bank will offer $16 million of the state-supported solar home renewable energy credit to retail and institutional investors Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively...
Article from Renewable Energy World:
The state’s green bank hopes to inspire residents to help fund clean energy investments to combat climate change.
The Connecticut Green Bank is offering residents a new way to personally invest in projects that confront climate change: mini green bonds.
Article from PV Magazine covering the initial Green Liberty Bond issuance:
In an industry first, Connecticut Green Bank is launching a retail climate bond series in which all of the proceeds generated from the roughly $16.1 million issuance will support rooftop solar deployment in the state...
To encourage Americans to be active in the global clean energy movement to confront climate change and to provide a way for Connecticut residents to strengthen their state’s green economy, the Connecticut Green Bank will be launching a new sub-category of green bonds – the Green Liberty Bond. Green Liberty Bonds are lower-dollar denomination bonds available to individual investors, the proceeds of which will be independently certified as financing projects with climate and environmental benefits.
It is anticipated that retail investors will be able to place orders for the initial $16 million Green Liberty Bonds on or about July 14, 2020, with institutional investors able to place orders on the following day.
“We wanted to create a financial instrument that allows Americans to invest in the climate economy and the future they want to see,” said Bryan Garcia, President and CEO of the Connecticut Green Bank. “Through Green Liberty Bonds, residents can save for themselves and their families while supporting clean energy projects here in Connecticut that confront climate change. We envision a world empowered by the renewable energy of community, and by providing this investment opportunity in honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, we are aligning investors with that vision.”
Modeled after the World War II Series-E bonds, which were purchased by more than 80 million Americans, Green Liberty Bonds are an opportunity for investors to take on the shared challenge of climate change through the purchase of bonds.
To launch the Green Liberty Bonds, the Green Bank is working with Ramirez & Co., Inc. as lead underwriter, Stifel, Nicolaus & Company, Inc. as co-underwriter, Shipman & Goodwin LLP as bond counsel, Lamont Financial Services Corporation as financial advisor, and Bank of New York Mellon Trust Company, N.A. as trustee.
The Green Liberty Bonds are expected to be labeled “Certified Climate Bonds” by the Climate Bonds Initiative, and compliance of the bond’s issuance with the Climate Bonds Standards will be verified by Kestrel Verifiers.
“We are excited to be part of the issuance of this new type of green bond with a focus on bringing retail investors to the table,” said Brad Friedman, Senior Vice President, Ramirez & Co., Inc.
While the Green Liberty Bond will be a new offering for the Connecticut Green Bank, the organization has previously issued three privately placed bonds, and the 2019 bond was recognized by Environmental Finance for innovative green bond of the year and green bond asset backed security of the year.
To help inform residents about the Green Bank’s mission and programs, including the Green Liberty Bond, Green Bank Board of Directors Chairwoman Lonnie Reed and Bryan Garcia will host two informational webinars: one on Thursday, July 2 from 12 – 1 pm, and one on Tuesday, July 7 from 7 – 8 pm. The Preliminary Official Statement, notifications and webinar registration information can be found at www.greenlibertybonds.com.
This press release does not constitute a recommendation or an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security or other financial instrument, including the initial Green Liberty Bonds, or to adopt any investment strategy. Any offer or solicitation with respect to the initial Green Liberty Bonds will be made solely by means of the Preliminary Official Statement and Official Statement, which will describe the actual terms and conditions of the Green Liberty Bonds. The information provided is subject in all respects to the information presented in the complete Preliminary Official Statement prepared in connection with the initial Green Liberty Bonds. Any investment decisions regarding any of the Green Liberty Bonds should only be made after a careful review of the complete Preliminary Official Statement.
April 23, 2020 - The Bond Buyer recently interviewed Connecticut Green Bank President and CEO Bryan Garcia and Managing Director of Operations Eric Shrago about Green Liberty Bonds and the role this new subcategory of bond will play in expanding clean energy investment. These small-denomination retail-investor focused municipal bonds are modeled after the World War II Series E bonds, and the proceeds are independently certified to confront climate change.
When Environmental Finance’s 2020 Bond Awards winners were announced earlier this week, the Connecticut Green Bank was recognized with two honors: the Award for Innovation – Green Bond Structure and the Award for Asset-Backed or Asset-Based Bond. These awards highlight the innovation and success of the Green Bank’s April 2019 $38.6 million in green asset backed securities, which was its first rated debt issuance, and the first ever solar asset-backed security (ABS) transaction by a green bank. The awards were judged by an independent panel comprising of 30 of the world’s largest green, social and sustainability bond investors.
IN AN INTERVIEW WITH CEFF, THE CONNECTICUT GREEN BANK (CGB) UNVEILED ITS PLANS to bring to market approximately $15 to $20 million of new $1,000 face value “Green Liberty Bonds.”
THE POTENTIAL BROAD APPEAL OF THE GREEN LIBERTY BONDS HINGES ON THEIR UNCOMMONLY LOW FACE VALUE – most municipal bonds are sold in minimum denominations of $5,000 rather than $1,000.
THE CGB HOPES THAT THE GREEN LIBERTY BONDS, IF BROADLY SUBSCRIBED IN CONNECTICUT, WILL ESTABLISH A PRECEDENT that encourages lawmakers to create a national green bond program analogous to the war bond programs of World War I and World War II.
Written for members of the investment community focused on energy efficient asset classes, this issue of the T-REX Trend Report uses Connecticut Green Bank’s landmark SHREC ABS deal to showcase how smart technology drives market transformation.
The Connecticut Green Bank has issued green Asset-Backed Securities consisting of $36.8 million in Solar Home Renewable Energy Credits (SHREC)Collateralized NotesSeries 2019-1 Class A and $1.8 million Series 2019-1 Notes, Class B. The financing is certified against the Climate Bonds Standard, providing investors with assurance of the deal’s green credentials. Verification against the Climate Bonds Standard was done by Kestrel Verifiers, a US-based company. Climate Action Reserve, a non-profit specializing in environmental impact assessment, provided an independent review of the beneficial impacts of the activities and programs financed with the securities. The Green Bank worked with RBC Capital Markets as their underwriter and sole book runner in this green bond transaction.
Connecticut is bucking a national trend of disparity when it comes to solar adoption among communities of color, according to figures released today by the Connecticut Green Bank. The rise is due to Green Bank’s successful efforts to make solar energy more accessible and affordable for homeowners in communities of color and low-to-moderate income (LMI) households by intentionally engaging these traditionally underserved communities.
The Connecticut Green Bank is pleased to announce the sale of $38.6 million investment-grade rated ABS notes. This innovative first-of-its-kind issuance monetizes the solar home renewable energy credits (SHRECs) generated through the Residential Solar Investment Program (RSIP). The sale was comprised of two tranches of SHRECs produced by more than 105 megawatts of 14,000 residential solar photovoltaic (PV) systems. The SHRECs were aggregated by the Green Bank and sold in annual tranches to Connecticut’s two investor-owned utilities, Eversource Energy and United Illuminating Company, at a fixed, predetermined price over 15 years. The funds raised through this sale will recover the costs of administering and managing the RSIP, including the incentives offered to residential participants in the program.