Earth Institute Invite

On February 18th, the Earth Institute, Columbia University invites you to attend a panel on Innovative Methods of Green Energy Finance moderated by Steve Cohen, the program director of the Master of Science in Sustainability Management. The panel will discuss the development of Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) legislation in America. Sixteen states have currently passed PACE enabling legislation, including New York, adding to the number of policy issues that sustainability managers will need to be fluent in.

PACE provides local agencies and property owners with the ability to meet common goals to save money and invest in the future. It provides cities, counties and special districts with the ability to designate a district where property owners may enter into a voluntary contractual assessment to finance energy and water efficiency or renewable energy improvements fixed to real property. The liens are then repaid via the property tax bill at an established rate of interest over a specific time period while the costs of the improvements stay with the property should the current owner sell in the future. These groundbreaking legislative changes give cities and counties a powerful tool in helping their community reduce their energy and water usage, utility bills and greenhouse gas emissions.

The panel features a number of energy experts who will discuss the implications of PACE:

  • Susan Leeds – Consultant to Natural Resources Defense Council on Finance Policy
  • Mabell Garcia Paine – Director of Sustainability at Willdan Energy Solutions
  • Wayne Seaton – Managing Director of Sustainable Public Infrastructure, Wells Fargo Securities
  • Michael Colgrove – Director of Energy Programs, NYC Office of NYSERDA
  • Fred Lee – Senior Project Manager, Energy Policy Group, NYC Economic Development Corporation

This event will provide an opportunity for prospective students to explore the resources available to the Graduate Program in Sustainability Management. This brand new program, set to welcome its first students in Fall 2010, is geared towards preparing professionals to set up and manage sustainability efforts within a wide range of fields. Graduates of the program will be well-versed in policy studies, finance, economics, and applicable environmental sciences that will help them to serve as uniquely qualified sustainability managers. Unlike other similar graduate programs offered within the Earth Institute, the M.S. in Sustainability Management gives students the ability to pursue a degree on a part-time or full-time basis.

The panel will be held from 5:30-7:00 PM in Presidential Room 2 of the Faculty House at Columbia’s Morningside Campus. If you are interested in attending the panel, please RSVP to Youngmi Jin

If interested in learning more about the M.S. in Sustainability Management (, we invite you to attend an information session on March 4th at 6:30 PM in the Low Library Faculty Room at Columbia’s Morningside Campus. To register for the information session, please go to:

Contact: Columbia Univ. School of Int’l & Public Affairs, 420 West 118th Street, New York, NY 10027

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