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NY Green Bank mobilised $927m for clean energy in 2016

The Governor of New York has already committed $360m to renewable energy projects since the start of this year.

New York Green Bank, the state's clean energy development bank, invested and leveraged from the private sector close to $1 billion in renewable energy projects and energy efficiency upgrades last year.

The state-sponsored financier said its $250 million of investments stimulated more than $677 million, totalling $927 million towards clean energy initiatives.

Working with the private sector to increase investments in New York's clean energy markets, the programme has become a critical part of Governor Andrew Cuomo's Reforming the Energy Vision plan to meet 50 percent of the state's energy needs with renewables sources by 2030.

NY Green Bank president Alfred Griffin said it is an “exciting time” for the state's clean energy industry because of the private sector participants who are expressing “ongoing interest in working with NY Green Bank to develop solutions that address financing gaps and barriers.”

“NY Green Bank is doing the job it was created to do – filling financing gaps to spur private sector investment in clean energy in the state,” added New York State chairman of energy and finance Richard Kauffman.

Some of its notable transactions throughout the year include a $25 million commitment in May to residential solar provider Sunrun to leverage a total of $340 million from private investors led by Investec. It also partnered with Germany's DZ Bank to give $200 million to fund Solar Mosaic's financing platform that allows homeowners to install solar panels for no upfront costs.

Since launching in 2013, the green bank has used public money to spur private-sector investments in clean energy companies. One of its more prominent examples is the $13.5 million commitment it made with US Bank in small-scale wind developer United Wind. A few months later, Forum Equity Partners invested $200 million in the company.

Separate from the green bank, Cuomo committed last week $360 million to leverage close to $1 billion from private investment that will build 11 large-scale renewable energy projects throughout the state. The projects include two wind farms generating a combined 207MW, a 50MW solar facility, upgrades at seven hydroelectric stations and a 1.05MW fuel cell to be installed at a pharmaceutical plant.

It has also been around a year since Cuomo launched the 10-year, $5 billion Clean Energy Fund to encourage private-sector investments.