Legal & General reiterates commitment to UK renewables

UK investment giant Legal & General has reiterated its commitment to investing in the UK solar and renewables sectors despite government plans to curtail subsidy support.

In a statement issued today, Legal & General chief executive Nigel Wilson said his company intends to “continue investment in renewable energy” despite the newly-elected Conservative government ending subsides to wind and solar energy.

The company has targeted to invest £15 billion in UK infrastructure and is just over a third of the way to meeting that target having invested more than £6.5 billion to date. Wilson said he now wanted Legal & General to make “direct investments” into renewable and clean energy sources while also guiding companies they already invest in to adopt low carbon policies.

Wilson highlighted solar of particular interest, noting its “potential for several billion pounds of new financing in the coming years”.

“Taking a balanced approach to energy generation, and prioritising research and development, would give us greater flexibility in moving towards renewable energy sources. The cost of renewable energy has fallen considerably in the last few years and now is the time for investors and governments to get things moving.

“We owe this to the next generation: we have already saddled them with over-priced housing and too much debt: let’s not add further environmental damage, excessive energy costs and £100 billion nuclear decommissioning to the toxic mix,” Wilson said.

Wilson also commented on UK solar experiencing what he labelled an “energy equivalent of Moore’s Law in computing”, wherein large increases in capacity have been accompanied by equally as substantial decreases in price.

This has created further evidence for the government to trim subsidy schemes, and Wilson said more money should now be allocated to research and development in order for prices to continue to fall.