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What Is C-PACE? | Maryland Commercial PACE

What is C-PACE?

Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy

Video Courtesy of PACENation

C-PACE is the acronym for Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy. But C-PACE stands for much more. It is a simple and effective way for county governments to create jobs, retain businesses, and keep dollars in the local economy without raising taxes – simply by helping to make commercial   buildings more energy-efficient.

C-PACE is a government policy based on the principle that commercial energy projects – such as installing solar equipment or improving a building’s heat recovery system – are public benefits like sewers, roads, and bridges. C-PACE authorizes counties to work with private capital providers to provide upfront financing to commercial property owners for qualifying improvement projects, and to collect the repayment through annual or semi-annual surcharges on the property’s tax bill.

By lowering that property’s energy expenses, C-PACE makes the building more inviting to tenants and, consequently, more valuable.  And with C-PACE, there are no upfront costs: C-PACE pays for 100% of a project and is repaid by the surcharge over a 20-year period. Moreover, the owner can sell the property, treat any expense as operational, and pass on costs to tenants.

C-PACE is underway in many states and has been named one of the Top Twenty World Changing Ideas by Scientific American magazine. Many county governments consider C-PACE a key component of their continuing efforts to promote economic development and to protect the environment.

Which means that C-PACE stands as a ready reply to the question, “What has my county government done for me?” 

Environmental Benefits

  • Assists states and local governments in reaching energy and water conservation goals
  • Reduces carbon emissions and water usage
  • Assists states in Clean Power Plan compliance

Economic Benefits

  • Lowers utility bills for building owners
  • Local job creation

No Cost to Tax Payers

  • C-PACE financing is funded through private capital, with no cost to taxpayers

What property types can C-PACE finance?





What measures are eligible for C-PACE finance?

Solar Energy Equipment

High-Efficiency Lighting and Building Systems

High-Efficiency Boilers and Furnaces and Heating Ventilation

Air Conditioning (HVAC) Upgrades

High-Efficiency Hot Water Heating Systems, Combustion and Burner


Building Shell or Envelope Improvements

Building System Energy Management Systems and Process Equipment Upgrades

Geothermal Energy Devices

Water Conservation