Co-Operative Bank pledges £300m for UK renewable energy projects

At a time when many solar companies are worrying about their financial situation, the Co-Operative Bank has pledged to provide approximately £300 million in loans for UK renewable energy projects throughout 2012.

During an interview with James Sutcliffe, Senior Manager for Renewable Energy at the British mutual bank, Bloomberg heard that the Co-Op plans to commit the funds to around 30 projects during this year. The bank also revealed that it will “probably” increase its £1 billion lending target to the end of 2013 by £250 million.

“We are absolutely bombarded with projects now, never been busier,” commented Sutcliffe. “Everyone is trying to get projects done before the ROC – renewables obligation certificates – banding changes in April next year.”

Since the feed-in tariff cuts to systems over 50kW, the large-scale solar market in the UK has slowed down. However, many UK solar parks are now expected to receive planning this year under the ROC system, with several already in the pipeline.

The Co-Operative Bank has committed about £750 million to more than 100 UK renewable energy projects since 2007.