Environmental sustainability is integral to the success of our business and important for our future.
Which is why since 2008, we have invested more than $22 billion in environmentally beneficial business opportunities. We embrace a balanced approach that is centered on learning and partnering with our stakeholders as we address climate change and the needs of our communities, customers, employees and shareholders.
U.S. Bank is a national leader in financing renewable energy, financing about 15% of all solar installations in the United States each year via tax equity financing, which makes communities more environmentally sustainable, and builds economic resiliency through access to affordable energy and the promotion of job growth.
Since 2008, we have invested$22 billionin environmentally beneficial business.
Throughout 2019, we provided $1.2 billion in renewable energy investments to help finance:
- 2.2gigawatts of solar power across the country
- 18,000jobs in the construction of these facilities
- 340,000equivalent homes powered by solar energy
The carbon offset of these investments is equal to removing 522,000 passenger vehicles from the road or planting three million acres of forest.
We partnered with Starbucks Coffee Company and a solar developer on a portfolio of solar farms across Texas. Two solar farms were developed, built and now operated by the solar developer, and are providing enough energy for the equivalent of 360 Starbucks stores in Texas.
As a leader in this space, we take great responsibility in advancing solar energy. We are committed to financing solar installations, promoting and identifying ways where its considerable benefits can be enjoyed by all people and communities and specifically those disproportionately affected by the negative impacts of climate change.
Investments bring benefits to environment and communities.
Our continued efforts in environmental sustainability resulted in a major milestone: by end of year 2019 we had invested over $11 billion in renewable energy projects enabling the development of more than 10 gigawatts of solar installations.
10 gigawatts of solar installations is a massive amount. When we announced this at a recent event, we were reminded that it represents nearly one-sixth of all solar installations deployed in the U.S. over the past 15 years.
The 10 gigawatts of solar installations are spread throughout communities across the country. In South Carolina, we participated in the financing of the state’s first utility-sponsored community solar program, providing solar options for those who have historically lacked access including renters and low-to-moderate income individuals. Near Rosamond, California, we worked with one of the nation’s top renewable energy providers by financing one of the largest solar facilities in its fleet, a 150 megawatt solar farm comprising of more than 477,000 solar panels extending over 1,100 acres of land. In Washington D.C., we are investing in a project with a nonprofit that’s installing solar on commercial rooftops and donating the electricity credits to low-income households.
As a result of the direct, indirect and induced impacts – from construction jobs to build the projects to workers grabbing lunch at local restaurants – the 10 gigawatts of solar installations we helped finance suggests an overall economic impact of $50 billion.
“That’s five times the economic payback on the cost of the tax credits themselves,” Van’t Hof said. “These investments are not only great for the environment, but also great for the health of our communities.”
Investing in Tribal Communities through U.S. Bank Tribal Solar Energy Scholarship with American Indian College Fund.
With our renewed support, GRID Alternatives, a national leader in making clean, affordable solar power and solar jobs accessible to low-income communities and communities of color, plans to install up to 1.2 megawatts of solar power on more than 60 low-income tribal homes and community buildings for tribal partners in Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, the Dakotas and Washington during the grant period. The extended partnership will allow GRID Alternatives to provide hands-on solar training for up to 100 tribal members, provide intensive professional development opportunities for tribal members through their SolarCorps Fellowship Program, and strengthen partnerships with tribal colleges and job training organizations in tribal communities.
With continued support from U.S. Bank, we will work with tribal communities to achieve their clean energy goals while providing hands-on training for local tribal members looking for entry in the solar industry.
We also work with the American Indian College Fund to award scholarships to students pursing post-secondary degrees in fields of study that lead to careers in solar energy. The College Fund supports higher education attainment, career readiness services, hands-on training, and job placement for these scholars, thereby supporting environmental sustainability and energy sovereignty for tribal communities.
Finding funding for and building a cleantech business is daunting for anybody. Unfortunately, these challenges are amplified for founders who are female or people of color. We’re excited to partner with U.S. Bank to leverage our experience in finding, funding, and growing cleantech startups to help these founders succeed.