Sustainable Communities

To meet the challenge of climate change, all sectors of society must be mobilized. Neither the private sector nor governments are fully equipped to define how we move beyond the carbon-based fuels responsible for global warming.

Deutsche Bank has been deliberate in directing resources and opportunities to those disadvantaged communities most affected by climate change. Through both grants and concessionary financing, innovative projects are being advanced which are helping to: bring small scale renewable energy production to the developing world; create job opportunities in the new “green” economy for low skilled workers; lower energy costs for affordable/social housing developments; and enable cities to bring to scale programs to make buildings more energy efficient.


Signature Programs

Solar for All

Solar for All is a global initiative to bring affordable solar energy to rural communities in developing countries that currently do not have access to electricity, via innovative off-grid power supply system solutions.  A partnership of social enterprise thought leaders, Solar For All will manage a design and business plan competition to identify a scaled, sustainable demonstration project that considers technology, product distribution and end-user financing. Deutsche Bank will provide $250,000 in equity or soft debt to assist in the demonstration project’s implementation. Solar For All was initiated by a consortium of organizations and foundations that are thought-leaders in the fields of social entrepreneurship, social finance and renewable energy, including Ashoka, the Fraunhofer Institute for Solar Energy, and the Canopus Foundation. 

Read more about Solar for All

The Green Carts Microenterprise Intermediary Program

Approximately three million New Yorkers live in neighborhoods with limited access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Low-income communities that suffer from a shortage of supermarkets and grocery stores also have higher rates of diet-related diseases, such as diabetes and obesity. The city has responded to this crisis with the NYC Green Carts program. The creation of 1,000 new vending permits will allow a fresh crop of entrepreneurs to operate mobile food carts selling fresh produce in underserved areas. To help with this initiative, Deutsche Bank has created the Green Carts Microenterprise Intermediary Program, awarding several grants to community-based organizations that will offer technical assistance to vendors negotiating the licensing process and contending with the other challenges of getting a small business off the ground.  

New York Building Retrofit Program

New York Building Retrofit Program was launched in 2009 by Deutsche Bank and the nonprofit Community Preservation Corporation as a partnership between financial institutions and philanthropic foundations to aggregate $150 million in capital to enable residential property energy efficiency retrofits to take place immediately and at scale.  In its pilot phase, the program is expected to retrofit 1,500 to 2,500 housing units, lowering energy and water costs for property owners of multifamily buildings   while contributing to Mayor Bloomberg’s PlaNYC 2030 plan to cut greenhouse gasses by 30% by 2030.  The New York Building Retrofit Program  targets small- and medium-sized multifamily building owners with a program that combines energy retrofit financing with a refinancing of the building’s underlying debt and a holistic approach that considers all of the capital needs of a property.  The program also provides a harmonized delivery system so that building owners can access a “one stop shop” for various public incentive and subsidy programs. In addition the program manages access to skilled professionals at all levels of the intervention--from building energy audits, to construction supervision to superintendent training to systems performance monitoring.

New York Industrial Retention Network

New York Industrial Retention Network is a city-wide New York City-based organization committed to preserving and creating well-paying manufacturing jobs and to promoting sustainable development and environmental justice. Each year, NYIRN works with approximately 300 companies employing 4,500 people and has worked with more then 2,200 companies since its inception in 1997.  Deutsche Bank sponsored a national retreat for 40 experts from 32 organizations representing local governments, economic, community and environmental justice organizations and national policy institutes.  This group of practitioners and policy thinkers discussed how they might collaborate to both improve the practice of development and to advance city, state and federal policies that support sustainable industrial development.   

E + Co

E + Co is a nonprofit organization that empowers local small- and medium-size enterprises that supply clean and affordable energy to households, businesses and communities in developing countries. In addition to financing, E+Co offers its portfolio companies ongoing technical assistance and management support. A $400,000 low-interest loan from Deutsche Bank is helping E+Co to help finance a solar photovoltaic manufacturing company in Nepal and a manufacturer of ceramic liners for energy efficient stoves in Ghana.  The hope is that these companies will meet local energy demand through the delivery of efficient, low-tech solutions while contributing to local economic development.
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Last Update: March 21, 2012
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