RTD plans to issue Climate Bonds Certified green bonds

The Regional Transportation District (RTD) today announced that the agency plans to issue green bonds as part of its commitment to delivering service in the most cost-effective manner possible and to help generate demand from environmentally conscious investors.

“Climate Bonds Certified green bonds finance climate change solutions, including those that fall within the categories of clean energy and energy efficiency,” said RTD General Manager and CEO Debra A. Johnson. “Improving the quality of life of RTD’s employees and customers, as well as residents of and visitors to our region, has remained a longstanding goal since our district was founded five decades ago. Issuing these bonds demonstrates our commitment to addressing one of the biggest challenges of our time.” 

Climate Bonds Certified green bonds are a bond issuance from which the proceeds are set aside for a specific purpose and exclusively applied to finance or refinance new or existing projects that promote progress on environmentally sustainable activities with climate change or emissions reduction benefits. Globally, the majority of green bond proceeds have been used to fund renewable energy, low carbon transportation infrastructure, water and waste projects, energy efficiency and low carbon buildings. The Green Bonds designation is designed to track the Green Bond Principles made known by the International Capital Market Association.

RTD is issuing bonds as Green Bonds-Climate Bonds Certified based on the environmentally sustainable elements of the FasTracks program, the district’s 2004 voter-approved, multibillion-dollar transit expansion plan for the Denver region. RTD used the original bond proceeds to fund parts of various FasTracks projects, including the University of Colorado A Line, B Line, R Line, W Line and Flatiron Flyer bus rapid transit service.

Issuing such bonds also aligns with RTD’s commitment to sustainability. As outlined in its most recent sustainability report – part of the annual Quality of Life Study – the district has made an impact on regional sustainability in four primary areas: air quality, transportation greenhouse gas emissions, electric vehicles and public health.  

RTD’s commitment to the expansion of zero-emission, reliable and affordable public transportation systems supports the vision of the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals, described in the Transforming our World: 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development adopted by all United Nations member states in 2015 that provides “a shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet.” The issuance of the bonds will directly support UN goals 9 and 11 – industry, innovation and infrastructure; and sustainable cities and communities – by expanding zero- and low-emission public transportation options in the Denver region.

To read the preliminary official statement, click here.