Australian musicians band together to launch solar investment fund

Future Energy Artists teams up with superannuation fund to make ‘hardcore solar infrastructure investments’.

A collective of Australian musicians has partnered with a local superannuation provider to establish a vehicle that will invest in solar projects and investment funds.

The collective, Future Energy Artists (FEAT.), is the brainchild of Heidi Lenffer, the keyboard player with band Cloud Control. Future Super, a superfund with a focus on zero-emissions and sustainable investing, has established a managed vehicle called the Future Renewables Fund, a source familiar with FEAT. told Infrastructure Investor. FEAT. members will invest in the FRF, with contributions as low as A$5 ($3.49; €3.10) accepted.

The FRF has already made commitments to at least one renewables investment vehicle: Impact Investment Group’s Solar Asset Fund, which is developing assets including the Chinchilla Solar Farm and the under-construction Brigalow Solar Farm, both in Queensland.

Lenffer said: “We’ve launched a company where artists can invest to own part of a solar farm and reshape the environmental legacy of our touring. These are investments, not donations.

“Artists will be making hardcore solar infrastructure investments and can expect to see annual returns. You could think of it like ‘solar royalties’, and we’ve set the minimum investment as low as possible to encourage all artists to get involved.

“I spent a long time consulting experts to figure out the best way we could make a difference as artists, and I had three criteria: whatever it was, it had to be super effective for cutting carbon emissions, science-approved, and highly scalable so we could make the biggest impact possible.”

A source familiar with FEAT. said IIG had helped Lenffer to understand the solar development landscape in Australia before she began to work with Future Super.

Lenffer added that the motivation behind the scheme was to mitigate the impact of touring on the environment, with carbon offsetting the only option previously available.

Other bands and musicians to have made commitments to FEAT. include Midnight Oil, Vance Joy, Regurgitator, Big Scary, Peking Duk and Jack River.