From the Christopher Mims' blog, White house to make $4 billion out of $0 using energy efficiency, "Everyone says energy efficiency can pay for itself, and now the White House is out to prove it...
"The White House says this initiative will lead to retrofits for 1.6 billion square feet of commercial and residental space, and create 50,000 jobs over the next two years.
Here’s how it will work: "The feds pay nothing, and the contractor itself
pays for the retrofit. Then the feds pay the contractor what they were
paying before, for energy. The contractor keeps the difference between
new, lower energy bills and what they're paid, until the cost of the
retrofit is paid off. Then the contract ends, and the feds reap all the
efficiency benefits from there on out. It's a similar financing
mechanism as, for example, SolarCity, which offers solar panels for free."