Commercial, Finance, Sourcing Renewables - February 25, 2021
Wells Fargo surpasses $10 billion in RE tax-equity investments
Wells Fargo Renewable Energy & Environmental Finance (REEF) announced on Feb. 25 that it has surpassed $10 billion in tax-equity investments in the wind, solar, and fuel cell industries. Wells Fargo has invested in more than 500 projects, helping to finance 12% of all wind and solar energy capacity in the U.S. throughout the past 10 years.
Even with federal tax incentives, most developers lack sufficient tax capacity and so rely on investors like Wells Fargo for funding. In 2018, Wells Fargo committed to providing $200 billion in financing to sustainable businesses and projects by 2030, earmarking $100 billion for transactions that directly contribute to driving a low-carbon future.
“Wells Fargo uses its tax capacity in a meaningful way to invest in projects that contribute to the nation’s acceleration toward a low-carbon economy,” Philip Hopkins, head of Wells Fargo Renewable Energy & Environmental Finance, a part of Wells Fargo Commercial Capital, said in a statement. “We are proud to play a key role in the growth of this important industry, and honored to work closely with so many leading sponsors and developers of wind and solar energy projects.”
Wells Fargo made its first tax-equity commitment to a wind project in 2006, and shortly thereafter began investing in distributed-generation solar. Since then, the bank has grown into one of the leading tax-equity investors in the nation’s renewable energy sector, financing projects in 32 states. Wells Fargo provided approximately $2.4 billion in financing to the renewable energy industry in 2020, representing an increase of $1 billion from 2019.
“Renewable energy is an important factor in addressing climate change,” Mary Wenzel, head of Wells Fargo Sustainability and Corporate Responsibility, said in the statement. “Our tax-equity investments are essential to meeting our commitment to being an industry leader through supporting new developments, working with utility and power clients, and by achieving 100% renewable energy in our operations.”