Over the years, the foundation has evaluated several environmentally friendly infrastructure funds and has finally approved one for inclusion in its portfolio, further increasing its allocation to Values-Aligned Investments. In addition to desirable financial targets, this investment also generates and tracks its positive non-financial returns, which I’d like to highlight.

When speaking with the fund’s leadership team, they explained that impact is part of their ethos. Naturally, the fund produces a product that meets a fundamental need, like electricity, energy savings, or water, and is cleaner, more resilient, and more cost-efficient than legacy infrastructure.

The fund focuses on solar energy, creating environmental justice, and reducing inequality. For example, solar energy is a renewable alternative to environmentally unfriendly coal, and coal mines are generally found in low-income areas. In 2020, as a result of the firm’s 39 MW of solar projects, 10,274 tons of CO 2 were not emitted. Another example of environmental justice is community solar because it has no income restrictions or credit requirements, which is what has historically contributed to education and housing inequality.

In addition to the impact being at the firm’s core, the investment team qualifies and quantifies the impact generated by each investment. For example, in 2020, the firm estimated that its projects would create 650,000 job hours over their useful lives. In other words, the fund’s sustainable infrastructure investments, like a solar farm, create a variety of new jobs, such as design, engineering, construction, accounting/legal, and operations/maintenance, which combined are forecasted to total 650,000 hours of work over approximately 25 years. In essence, the fund indirectly creates job opportunities even though the fund’s primary purpose is to generate a positive financial return through renewable energy investments.

We are excited about the foundation’s new sustainable infrastructure investment, and we look forward to relaying progress updates over the coming years.