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Green Revolving Fund

Smart investing for the future

The Green Revolving Fund (GRF) is a $12 million revolving fund that provides capital for high-performance campus design, operations, maintenance, and occupant behavior projects.


Harvard first launched the GRF in 2002. Basic project eligibility guidelines state that projects must reduce the University’s environmental impacts and have a payback period of five to ten years or less. Since its inception, the GRF has supported nearly 200 projects that have yielded over $4 million in energy savings annually.

Solar panels on the HKS Wexner Building against blue skies in the background.

The model is simple:

  • GRF provides the up-front capital
  • Applicant departments agree to repay the fund via savings achieved by project-related reductions in utility consumption, waste removal, or operating costs.
  • The payback formula allows departments to upgrade the efficiency, comfort, and functionality of their facilities without incurring any capital costs.

Project Criteria

GRF projects are classified as either greenhouse gas emissions or utility reduction and/or innovation. 

Commonly funded categories include lighting; HVAC; kitchen; all types of commissioning; behavior change; controls; insulation; renewable energy; metering; cogeneration; and more.

Eligible projects include ones that:

  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • Reduce energy use
  • Reduce water use
  • Reduce sewage or stormwater
  • Reduce pollutants
  • Improve operations
  • Educate occupants
  • Install renewable energy


If you would like to apply and need a copy of the application, please contact

Applicants are encouraged to contact the Office for Sustainability when starting the process of applying to address any questions. Upon approval, the applicant will receive an award letter with the project identification number.   


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Harvard is accelerating sustainable building to enhance health, productivity, equity, and quality of life on campus – as well as for those in our value chain and their communities.

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Looking up from one of the patios in the new Science and Engineering Complex building in Allston at Harvard University. Rose Lincoln/Harvard Staff Photographer