Macquarie Group offers £500m to finance sustainable projects

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Australian investment group Macquarie has offered £500 million to finance green projects.

The money forms part of a new £2 billion facility, with one-quarter earmarked for a range of sustainable initiatives. The first round of £250 million will be put towards renewable energy projects, while a second round will branch out to include energy efficiency, waste management, and clean transport.

The loan reportedly saw strong demand from the global finance community, particularly in Asia.

Macquarie has developed a Green Impact Assessment methodology to ensure that the financing goes to the right places. This measures how much a project reduces greenhouse gas emissions, protects or enhances the natural environment, biodiversity, and others.

The group, noted for its leading position as a global infrastructure investor, is hoping to build on its credentials in green finance after the purchase of the Green Investment Bank in 2017. The institution was originally created by the UK Government to accelerate the low-carbon transition, and its privatisation proved controversial in some quarters. Some politicians and environmental groups expressed concern that its mission would be lost once in private hands.

However, Macquarie, claims to have helped finance £15 billion of green investment over the past decade, amounting to 20 gigawatts of new clean energy capacity. Its acquisition of the bank, now called Green Investment Group, gives it a strong position to capitalise on the UK’s position as a world leader in offshore wind. The bank has invested £1.6 billion in nine separate offshore projects since 2010.

Alex Harvey, Macquarie’s chief financial officer said: “This transaction further demonstrates the leading global role Macquarie is playing in the growth of green finance and the development of new renewables capacity. The future utilisation of our Green Investment Group’s market-leading Green Impact Assessment approach is another example of the value delivered by our acquisition of GIG in 2017.”

Photo Credit: Andy Dingley/CC

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