Banks Renewables – the renewables division of the Bank Group – has secured an £82mn refinancing deal that will be used to fund a forward programme of onshore windfarms and other projects. The business, which currently has a total generating capacity from onshore windfarms of 224MW, agreed to the refinancing deal for seven of its existing windfarms across the North of England.
Simon Fisher, Group Finance Director at The Banks Group said: “Onshore wind is widely recognised as being the most effective technology in delivering carbon reduction targets for the UK at the lowest cost for the consumer”. He also noted an “increasingly positive public appetite” for onshore wind, that will likely see it “play a larger part in the mix of energy generation sources that the UK needs to power its homes, businesses, schools and hospitals”.
It is not the first time that lenders National Australia Bank and Santander, responsible for the funding of the refinancing deal, have invested into prospective renewable energy developments. Both companies were involved in the Banks Group’s £210mn investment package back in 2017 for the Moore House wind farm, Middle Muir and Kype Muir schemes.
Santander since then has been investing in other forms of renewable support such as in battery storage systems. In January 2018, the bank struck a deal with BEIS to deploy an additional 49MW of battery storage onto the national grid. The importance of such storage is ever greater in a period of increased intermittency in electrical supply as a result of higher dependency on renewable sources of energy.
The Banks Group believes that investment such as their £82mn refinancing deal is an expression of real confidence in the UK onshore wind sector. As pressures to lower carbon emissions continue to mount, investment like this is bound to become more common and more readily available in the future.