Sustainable Endowments Institute (SEI) commits to building and scaling Green Revolving Investment Tracking System (GRITS) 2.0 web platform to enable institutions to drive increased investment in renewable energy projects by effectively managing, analyzing, and comparing project-level energy, financial, and carbon performance data, including return on investment, net present value, internal rate of return, and energy and cost savings. This will help achieve over $1.2 billion in new renewable energy and energy efficiency projects that will be deployed by SEIs more than 150 partner institutions. GRITS 2.0 will expand from its focus on universities to the broader Municipal, University, Hospital, and School (MUSH) market, as well as to the private sector.
Based on the early success of GRITS 1.0 and GRITS 1.1, SEI commits to launch GRITS 2.0 to help accelerate investment in proven renewable energy projects and energy conservation measures (ECMs). GRITS growing collaborative Project Library (designating institution names, descriptions, and detailed performance data) provides a unique resource for prioritizing ECMs and for benchmarking. SEI anticipates over 2,000 institutions using GRITS 2.0, with more than 10,000 entries in the Project Library (by the end of the two year project period). This will help overcome the lack of attributional comparative project data, a major barrier hampering decision-maker willingness to invest. If the current average project size and performance metrics remain constant, GRITS 2.0 would help track nearly $1.2 billion in renewable energy and ECM investments across more than 20,000 buildings, resulting in project lifetime savings of over 3 billion kWh, 1.42 billion gallons of water, and 40 million metric tons CO2e. It will also generate about $210 million annually in savings. The Data to Action project will enable these 2,000 institutions to access GRITS and help achieve significant portfoliowide energy savings goal.
1. Launch GRITS 2.0 within 15 months. While GRITS 1.1 has most key features already operational, GRITS 2.0 will add many new functions and functionality (Q1-Q5, Q8): New features will include enhanced benchmarking, fully customizable electricity pricing models, optional user-defined carbon emissions factors, and seamless Excel data uploads. Each new feature must go through five phases: design/engineering, feedback, implementation, testing, and release. The rollout of each feature will be assigned to one of three releasesGRITS 1.2 (Q1, Task 1.1/1.2), 1.5 (Q2-Q3, 1.3/1.4) and 2.0 (Q4-Q5, 1.5/1.6). Task will be handled by SEI staff with partners being engaged for the feedback phase and ICF International will assist with the design/engineering and testing phases. Updates and tweaks to the 2.0 release will respond to user feedback (Q8, 1.7)
2. Free Access to GRITS Basic enrolls 2,000 nonprofit organizations within two years. By implementing a new freemium (free and premium) business model, they will also provide GRITS Plus and GRITS Unlimited (more features and unlimited users/projects) at affordable prices while ensuring the long-term program self-sufficiency after EERE funding concludes.
3) Expand User Base and Support Existing Users (Q1-Q8). Provide responsive training/assistance to existing users (Q1-Q8, 3.1), implement GRITS freemium business model to coincide with the launch of GRITS 1.5 (Q3, 3.2), and conduct outreach through existing and new partners (Q1-Q8, 3.3). GRITS 2.0 will grow to 2,000 institutions, with 10,000 entries in the GRITS Project Library by the end of the two-year program period.