Implementing Climate Action

Toolkits for Municipalities

HIP works directly with cities, counties and regional partnerships to identify and implement viable funding and financing pathways for climate action and adaptation initiatives, prioritizing measures that reduce greenhouse gases (GHGs) and have a positive return on investment (ROI).

Funding Climate Action Consulting

In a typical consulting engagement, HIP engages with a city or county’s sustainability director and staff to refine a catalog of priority, high impact climate action initiatives. We then work with the finance department to understand the community’s unique financial landscape, and connect with local elected officials to identify political sensitivities. Synthesizing these conversations with our knowledge and network, HIP connects action to implementation.

Climate Action Funding & Financing Maps

Custom, detailed Climate Action Funding & Financing Map provides the community with a pathway to capital with an array of suggested funding and financing strategies [including grants, public-private partnership structures, loans, bonds, taxes, and fees] possible sources of funds, and relevant case studies.

Climate Action Funding Maps:

  • Detail finance options to pursue climate goals
  • Showcase unique case studies for traditional financing strategies.
  • Communicate funding needs and options to attract resources and partners.
  • Create opportunities for collaboration to scale and drive coordinated action.

Climate Risks and Opportunities in the Great Lakes Region: Leveraging Green Infrastructure as a Resilience Measure for Stormwater Infrastructure

Great Lakes counties face increasingly worse stormwater events, yet can adapt their workforce to pursue Green Stormwater Infrastructure (GSI) projects, if these regions can strategically finance projects — thus, a potential fit for muni-bond financings.

In pursuit of actionable solutions, HIP Investor and Environmental Consulting & Technology (ECT) co-authored The Resilient Infrastructure Sustainable Communities (RISC): Climate Risks and Opportunities in the Great Lakes Region: Leveraging Green Infrastructure as a Resilience Measure for Stormwater Infrastructure, analyzes four pillars county by county — climate risks, social vulnerability, workforce agility, and fiscal affordability. This research identifies which communities can become more resilient — and more ready for investors — sooner rather than later, and how to prioritize high impact climate action.

As a follow on project, HIP investor, in collaboration with Corvias Infrastructure Solutions (CIS) produced the study: Green Job Creation in the Nation’s Largest Stormwater Programs, highlighting the compelling positive impacts of Green Job Creation within Green Stormwater Infrastructure initiatives across the U.S. The study examines the effectiveness of “Green Job Creation” within our nation’s largest green stormwater infrastructure programs. The programs studied here-in include those led by Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District, Prince George's County, Maryland, Buffalo Sewer Authority, and Philadelphia Water Department.

The project achieved all three goals:

  • Built a cluster of water quality focused urban resiliency leaders and finance experts
  • Developed a financial playbook for the Great Lakes Basin that presents a clear pathway to opportunities and capacities, and investment strategies for resilient stormwater infrastructure

"Making Climate Infrastructure Equitable"
A Toolkit and Workbook

Investments in urban infrastructure can tackle the climate crisis, spark COVID-19 economic recovery, create quality jobs, strengthen resiliency and address inequities in the built environment and infrastructure services — but designing and financing sustainability projects can be challenging.

These resources were informed by work with a cohort of Matchmaker Cities funding the next wave of equitable climate action. The Webinars, Project Profiles, Financing Menus and Toolkit can be used by local governments pursuing social equity in infrastructure, funding and financing sustainability projects.

A How-To Guide “Funding & Financing Climate Action Plans”

Cities around the world are committing to reducing greenhouse gases (GHGs), as aggressively as 100% by 2030 — yet very little funding is allocated to these dramatic goals. How can cities fund and finance their climate action plans (CAPs)?

Researched and authored by the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (, the City of Oakland, and HIP Investor, this new how-to guide, “Funding and Financing Climate Action Plans,” outlines a compelling approach and 7-step process to identifying and aligning types of capital with various climate solutions.

Project work can also includes “digital mixers” with investors, donors, and lenders to explore funding and financing of projects, actions, and strategies.

Includes examples of “Climate Action Funding and Financing Maps,” based on the participating cities across North America, including:

  • Oakland, California (lead city)
  • Fremont, California
  • San Luis Obispo, California
  • Anchorage, Alaska
  • Bend, Oregon
  • Columbia, Missouri

Toolkit for Financing Sustainable Cities

In 2016, HIP developed the Financing Sustainable Cities Scan and Toolkit for the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN), a membership of more than 200+ cities and counties in North America, with the City of Palo Alto as the lead city, and 15 cities and counties participating. The Financing Sustainable Cities Scan and Toolkit presents 30 financing mechanisms and 7 partnership structures used by cities and counties to achieve climate action, as well as detailed case studies on those 37 financing pathways. The project also included convening more than 20 investors and fund managers to engage with the cities and counties on the opportunities to invest in positive-ROI, GHG-reducing projects, programs and initiatives.

.zip file with 3 PDFs

The toolkit Includes:

  • Scan of 30 Financing Mechanisms and 8 Partnership Types
  • Key Climate and ROI Metrics
  • Potential Climate Action Funders
  • Produced and authored by USDN, City of Palo Alto, and HIP Investor

This open-source scan and toolkit has been integrated into multiple climate-action plans, including City of San Jose; and used as a resource for mayors, councils, sustainability directors, and CFOs and controllers.

Watch this CDP Webinar featuring HIP Funding & Financing Climate Action