Treasury sets up company to invest in 'low emissions' businesses possibly involving the likes of electric vehicles, energy efficient buildings & low-emissions farming practices

James Shaw by Jacky Carpenter

Climate Change Minister James Shaw has launched an investment fund to help finance “low emissions” businesses.

The fund will take the form of a company established by Treasury – New Zealand Green Investment Finance Ltd – so will operate independently of the Government and look to make a profit.

This makes it slightly different to the $3 billion Provincial Growth Fund.

The Government has committed to injecting $100 million into NZ Green Investment Finance Ltd to get it going.

Shaw expects the return the company will eventually make will mean it can repay the Government and see it stand on its own commercial footing.

“More and more investment dollars are looking for clean, sustainable ventures to invest in,” he says.

“Establishing this fund positions New Zealand to attract its share of that investment capital.”

The company will be mandated to focus on sectors and industries where the greatest impact on emissions reductions will be made.

Shaw says there could be opportunities around things like electric vehicles, manufacturing processes, energy efficient commercial buildings and low-emissions farming practices.

The company will mainly look to invest in businesses that are already set up.

However further details around the criteria applicants will have to meet to receive funding are scant.

Details around the types of funding businesses will receive are also hazy, however a spokesperson for Shaw’s office says this will vary.

Interest.co.nz understands this to mean that one company could, for example, receive a low interest loan from NZ Green Investment Finance, while another could sell shares to the NZ Green Investment Finance, and another could get NZ Green Investment Finance to stand security for a bank loan it takes out.

Cecilia Tarrant has been appointed the chairperson of NZ Green Investment Finance’s board.

Tarrant is the chairperson of the Government Superannuation Fund Authority, as well as ArcAngels – an angel investment network that invests in women entrepreneurs. She is also a director on the boards of Seeka and Payments NZ.

David Woods has been appointed a director. He has experience in international banking, as well as social investment. Among other things, he was the managing director of a large Netherlands-based social financier, Oikocredit International.

Businessman, Rob Fenwick, has been appointed an “ambassador” of NZ Green Investment Finance.

Shaw plans to have a full board established by April, and expects the company to start taking funding applications from mid-2019 (or just after).

“New Zealand faces a big job in upgrading our economy and infrastructure. NZ Green Investment Finance will help deliver financial backing to help ensure that the upgrade is fit for purpose,” Shaw says.

We welcome your help to improve our coverage of this issue. Any examples or experiences to relate? Any links to other news, data or research to shed more light on this? Any insight or views on what might happen next or what should happen next? Any errors to correct?

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36 Comments

Green investment is an oxymoron.
all profit demands growth.
all exponential growth is unsustainable

Not sure if its the Green's cant admit it because if so they'd be laughed at, voter fear/denial would kick in and they would be un-electable or they think its quite possible, or both.

Even exponential growth of renewable energy is unsustainable?

exponential and renewable and not compatible at some limit

Are they only measuring profit in monetary terms? Will they put a price on emissions and use this to measure profit?

Profit does not demand growth.

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So now we have ourselves two boondoggles:

  1. Provincial NZF Electoral Lifeline Growth Fund
  2. Green Vote Purchasing Investment Fund

The UK's National Audit Office examined the Green Investment Bank there and their report was not exactly a ringing endorsement of the concept......

Ask Obama how his green handouts all worked out ??

and how did his non-green handouts work out?

Speaking of subsidies....trillions to oil...i guess that's OK?

" The subsidies were $4.9 tn in 2013 and they rose to $5.3 tn just two years later..."

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/20...

That 97% consensus is rubbish as the way is was "worked out" is incorrect to say the least.

The 97 Percent Solution

----
Surely the most suspicious “97 percent” study was conducted in 2013 by Australian scientist John Cook — author of the 2011 book Climate Change Denial: Heads in the Sand and creator of the blog Skeptical Science (subtitle: “Getting skeptical about global warming skepticism.”). In an analysis of 12,000 abstracts, he found “a 97% consensus among papers taking a position on the cause of global warming in the peer-reviewed literature that humans are responsible.” “Among papers taking a position” is a significant qualifier: Only 34 percent of the papers Cook examined expressed any opinion about anthropogenic climate change at all. Since 33 percent appeared to endorse anthropogenic climate change, he divided 33 by 34 and — voilà — 97 percent! When David Legates, a University of Delaware professor who formerly headed the university’s Center for Climatic Research, recreated Cook’s study, he found that “only 41 papers — 0.3 percent of all 11,944 abstracts or 1.0 percent of the 4,014 expressing an opinion, and not 97.1 percent,” endorsed what Cook claimed. Several scientists whose papers were included in Cook’s initial sample also protested that they had been misinterpreted. “Significant questions about anthropogenic influences on climate remain,” Legates concluded.

Read more:
https://www.nationalreview.com/2015/10/climate-change-no-its-not-97-perc...

Holy moly , send this one Scientist from Australia to stop the COP24 immediately. We've been had, and every scientific body in every country bar Australia and the USA have brought it .

“The National Review” And whoops there goes any credibility.

Fill your boots. "A claim has been that 97% of the scientific literature endorses anthropogenic climate change (Cook et al., 2013. Environ. Res. Lett. 8, 024024). This claim, frequently repeated in debates about climate policy, does not stand. A trend in composition is mistaken for a trend in endorsement. Reported results are inconsistent and biased. The sample is not representative and contains many irrelevant papers. Overall, data quality is low. Cook׳s validation test shows that the data are invalid. Data disclosure is incomplete so that key results cannot be reproduced or tested."
https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0301421514002821

Great point!

Obsama won't take my calls!

Love this initiative. This helps out some of the more environmentally friendly businesses get a foot hold and in time will pay back the government and become a earner for the government.
Yet still the negative vibe of any green initiative felt within the comments section rings true. Go figure.

“What is history but the story of how politicians have squandered the blood and treasure of the human race?”

― Thomas Sowell

If by treasure you mean natural treasure. ie functioning ecosystem in which we can be healthy and prosper. Then yes governments have been very good at squandering this. That is why when it comes to environmental initiatives we must either support these, or come up with a better idea because continuing on as we are is simply not an option.

To believe there is no alternative is subjective, that aside to believe politicians motives are entirely genuine and noble is another, they now have your support which is their number one objective your money will be wasted.

I'm still listening for your ideas on how we incentive our companies to become more environmentally friendly.
You must have many. I wouldn't think you could be someone who just criticize others and offer no alternatives of your own, as we both know that would be a very unproductive attitude.

Probably when we reliase our survival depends upon it. Deep down we know it, but it's in the too hard basket for now because the consequences of our current actions are too hard to fathom and correct. I'm looking forward to explaining to future yet to be born generations as to why we burnt fossil fuels for energy.

Its already happening the consumer is demanding it businesses are changing big time the market is a highly competitive place. You don't need me to tell you that it does however take time. Yes Govt can provide carrots creating awareness but history tells us splashing cash is a waste.

Jamin,

Smarter companies respond to signals. They try to anticipate where markets are going-to get ahead of the curve. very gradually,those companies are beginning to realise that they don't exist simply to fulfill the perceived short-term demand of their shareholders and senior executives. Those forward looking companies see other stakeholders having an equal claim on them;their employees, customers and the environment.
There is a new class of company,as yet very small but growing,The Benefit Corporation. It started in the US and is spreading. Synlait Milk is the first NZ quoted company to announce that it will seek accreditation as a B company.

Are you suggesting that change is happening across the board and at a fast enough pace that should please scientists? No government intervention is necessary?

"Mr President, the people cannot afford diesel.” To which the cloth-eared Macron has, in effect replied: “Let them buy Teslas.
...His obsession with the environment and keeping his green allies on board has led him to ignite a wildfire in France that threatens to consume his entire ambitious reform program while diminishing him on the world stage. A comparison with Nero is not inapt. He is fiddling with carbon reduction targets while Paris burns."
https://blogs.spectator.co.uk/2018/12/emmanuel-macron-has-united-france-...

"His obsession with the environment and keeping his green allies on board" you mean listening to scientists and facing up to long term realities.

Here's a reality: You can't take money off people if they don't have it. People still have to be able to live and eat. If your idea of saving the planet is to hit those in poverty even harder, then we do not deserve to survive whatever comes next. That may not be what your Remuera-dwelling Green voters like to hear, but thankfully the sound of Range Rovers drown out such trivial matters from the great unwashed.

Here's a reality: Global warming is happening and if we don't act fast we are all f#**'d

btw I'd like to point out those you say are living in so called poverty are living in a 1st world country living a lifestyle considered rich by any historical standard. To make out these people are starving because of a fuel tax hike is hyperbole.

It will be interesting to see how the National party respond to this one. Can't get much "Blue greener" .
As to the "if its the Green Party its nuts" comments, time to grow up and accept the world is changing.

"“More and more investment dollars are looking for clean, sustainable ventures to invest in,” he says."

So, there is a surfeit of money already looking to invest in green ventures, so his response is to put some taxpayer money into it.

I always was a Greens' voter, these days, I try, but it's hard.

The absolute greenest thing one can do... is to have fewer offspring.

It is rather sad to me that one of the two co-leaders of the "green" party has six children (so far). There is nothing resembling sustainable in an exponential growth of the population. I really am looking forward to an environmental party without the extreme socialism that seems to be correlated with "environmentalism".

I'd far rather see a meaningful reduction in the birth rate than a reduction in carbon usage per person. As long as the number of people are increasing in an exponential manner, the essential problem will not be resolved. It is rather disturbing that the wild mammal biomass is only 3% of the total mammal biomass on the planet. This will not end well...

Good luck with that. The govt has huge handouts for breeders to keep on pumping out kids.

It is pretty easy to get an investment grant for nefarious purposes these days. This fund makes it even easier. Instead of encouraging it simply supplies a greater slush fund and for those developers who are wily it can easily provide them more profit. We even had several fraudulent companies scamming money off councils for "green" initiatives. Many often leaving large multimillion dollar costs for ratepayers to cover the fallout. Simple ideas that cost little but have the most effect will be ignored, money wasted and communities continue as before deeper into inequity.

If the fund invests in electric vehicles and these, over time, replace petrol/diesel, that is economic growth. What is wrong with growth in which planet friendly products replace those that are not? In any case I've invested in green funds overseas for the past decade with excellent returns, good to have a NZ option.

That money could buy 140,000 electric scooters.