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Last Updated March 6, 2023

Program Overview


Financial Incentive



Incentive Type:

Loan Program


Energy Efficient Schools Initiative

Start Date:


Expiration Date:


Web Site:

Applicable Sectors:


Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies:



The Energy Efficient Schools Initiative (EESI) was created in May 2008 to provide loans to Tennessee school systems for capital outlay projects that meet energy efficient design and technology guidelines for school facilities.  All school systems in Tennessee are eligible to apply.

State government appropriated the original funding ($90 million) with a onetime transfer from the Lottery for Education Account reserve and Lottery for Education special reserve account for K-12 capital outlay. Additional money to the fund comes from interest earnings and other funds secured by the Energy Efficient Schools Council. The Council is administratively attached to the Department of Education.  

Eligible projects include lighting retrofits and controls, HVAC upgrades, building automation systems, retro-commissioning, upgrades to more efficient appliances and certain building envelope improvements. Project required architectural and engineering services are also eligible.

All project applications will be reviewed by EESI’s Technical Advisory Committee, which will verify the proposed energy cost reductions to assure adequate savings to fund the loan debt. Assistance in completing the application will be provided to district personnel from EESI staff upon request. EESI staff can also recommend additional low cost project funding opportunities if the amount of funds they have available is less than what is needed.