Funding energy efficiency and renewable energy projects

Banks say noAt times it may seem like a catch 22. You want to reduce your energy costs, you know there are plenty of ways to save and make money from renewable technologies and other energy efficiency products, but you have no capex to spend.

Fortunately, whilst banks are reluctant to lend money, despite what they may say, there are organisations out there with dedicated pots of money, purely to fund such projects.

Here are three simple ways to access the funds to implement your project, without upfront costs.

Lease Purchase

The Carbon Trust/Siemens Finance have a £550m pot of funds to support renewable energy and energy efficiency projects for businesses of all sizes and shapes. Finance can be taken as lease purchase, lease or loan. The key to accessing the fund is that the new equipment helps your business reduce your carbon footprint.  Funding is available up to 5 years for projects such as LED lighting (which typically have a 2-3 year payback anyway) and up to 7 years for solar pv, wind or biomass, again which would normally pay for themselves in that time. Funding is straight forward and decisions made quickly. Renewable Solutions are able to access this fund and to process your application in full. The Carbon Trust will provide an independent verification of your systems predicted performance.

Low Interest Loan

There are still well-known lenders out there willing to lend to businesses, in particular for renewable energy projects which have guaranteed income via feed-in-tariffs, such as solar PV and Wind Turbines, or the Renewable Heat Incentive, such as biomass boilers and heat pumps. One of our funding partners will lend at low rates,  typically 3-4%, with no deposit required. The loan is to your business and is not directly linked to your tariff income. Decisions are quick and they will lend to most types of business, especially rural/agricultural businesses.

ESC0/Free funded model

For businesses with a high energy demand there are funds that will pay for, insure and maintain a renewable energy project for you. For example a large solar array, or a biomass boiler. In return you sign up for a PPA (Power Purchase Agreement) to buy the electricity or heat generated by your system for 20 years. The purchase price will be well under the market rate you now pay for your energy, and often linked to RPI rather than energy costs, which are double the rate of inflation. Clearly the site does need to be good, and there needs to be the visibility of continuity of consumption on the site.  But you could save substantial sums on your energy bills without any capital outlay or loan repayments.

Of course there are also tax breaks, as you can read in my previous blog ‘Get the Tax Man to pay for some of your renewable energy project‘.

Don’t let funding stop you from making an investment for the good of your business. There has never been a better policy background, funding opportunity or tax breaks. Don’t just take my word for it, ask the Carbon Trust, or an accountant…..



About David Hunt

The official blurb is on the 'About' page, but I'm a father of two, soon to be three, and I want to see the physical world in which we live preserved and protected for my kids to see and experience. That is why renewable energy is my business and a passion. .
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