Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE) is a financing mechanism designed to encourage energy and water efficiency improvements, renewable energy systems, and building resiliency projects for commercial properties. As a voluntary, open-market financing model, C-PACE allows commercial property owners to secure private low-interest, long-term loans for eligible permanently affixed energy source or energy-efficiency, water conservation, or resiliency improvements whereby the loan is placed on the property in the county land records as an assessment. The financing is repaid annually by the property owner over the useful life of the improvements. As a property tax assessment, the financing arrangement then remains with the property even if it is sold, facilitating long-term investments in building performance. The longer-term payback allows the efficiency improvements to pay for themselves over time.
In Oklahoma, C-PACE financing may be made available for HVAC upgrades, boilers, chillers and furnaces, automated building controls, high efficiency lighting, building envelopes (insulation, windows, etc.), low-flow fixtures, solar, geothermal, electric vehicle charging stations, and other energy source, energy-efficiency, water conservation, and resiliency improvement projects.
In early 2020, during the shortest legislative session in state history, an amendment to the C-PACE amendment was approved by the legislature and signed by the Governor, establishing the legal groundwork for the C-PACE program that operates today.
Continuing through 2020 and with assistance from the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, Tulsa County officials, private sponsors, and many C-PACE stakeholders throughout the state and country, the Indian Nations Council of Governments (INCOG) with PACE Financial Servicing worked to design, develop and fully launch the Oklahoma C-PACE Program in the Fall of 2020!
By early 2021, the first counties to become fully enabled authorizing the Oklahoma C-PACE Program were Tulsa County and Cleveland County. The first project closed under the program in Tulsa County in April 2021. Canadian County became the third Oklahoma C-PACE enabled county in July 2021.