Iona Capital, through its North West Environmental Infrastructure Fund and through Iona Environmental Infrastructure Funds 1 and 2, has committed £130 million (US$158 million) of investment into new and existing environmental infrastructure projects in the UK’s Northern Powerhouse.
To date Iona has: developed a portfolio of bio-energy plants in North Yorkshire; redeveloped plants including Cumbria Biogas at Dryholme farm near Silloth in Cumbria, and; work has just begun with a highly innovative company to develop biofuels from waste in Bradford.
These low carbon projects are helping the UK to achieve climate change commitments, promote the circular economy, and create jobs and opportunities in northern England. Many of the projects take biowaste and produce green gas and electricity that is then supplied back to the National Grid.
Investors in Iona’s three infrastructure funds include a number of local government pension funds, such as the Merseyside Pension Fund and the Greater Manchester Pension Fund. These and other local authority pension funds have mandated Iona to invest in environmental infrastructure projects that generate a measurable and beneficial impact – with a financial return.
Peter Wallach, Director of Merseyside Pension Fund, comments:
“Where we can make investments with fund managers that develop real assets which meet our target investment returns and have social benefits such as creating employment, then it is always a good news item which will be fully endorsed by my Pensions Committee members. Iona Capital has achieved this for us with the £60m entrusted to them.”
Paddy Dowdall, Assistant Executive Director of Greater Manchester Pension Fund, says:
“We have £40 million currently earmarked for specific environmental infrastructure projects within the North West through Iona Capital. This money has been speedily absorbed into great projects which I believe will have a positive local environmental impact and create additional local jobs. This is all part of the Greater Manchester Pension Fund’s commitment to supporting local investment without compromising on our returns.”