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Growing consumer demand for renewable energy fuelling investment in sector

Net Zero

Consumers are more interested in renewable energy than ever before, with new research suggesting that 51% of consumers are looking at renewable energy tariffs when their deal comes up for renewal.

The research from Alpha Real Capital LLP and Cornwall Insight found that 38% of consumers claim to have renewable energy tariffs for their homes already, while 51% promise to choose a renewable tariff at their next renewal. 

When asked why they choose renewable energy tariffs, the research found 80% said it is because it is better for the environment, although 46% believe they can get a better deal. 

Despite thinking they could get a better deal, many consumers are willing to pay more for the option of getting their electricity purely from renewable energy – a whole 26% of respondents. Of that 36%, over 70% would pay a premium of 5% or more.

As an investment manager actively deploying long term capital on behalf of institutions who support responsible investing and the transition to net zero, these findings are interesting to Alpha, because growing consumer demand should lead to investors looking to increase their exposure to this asset class.

Recent research from Alpha revealed that over the next five years, 68% of UK pension fund investors expect allocations to renewable energy to increase.

Ben Hall, group consulting partner at Cornwall Insight, said, “With climate change now at the forefront of consumers’ minds, renewable energy tariffs are becoming an increasingly popular choice for customers. Whilst this research mainly focused on residential consumers, it’s also clear from our experience the net zero agenda is increasing demand for renewable energy from corporates and large businesses too.

“This growing demand will undoubtedly send an important signal to the investment community, boosting the build-out of renewable technologies that will help the UK meet its 2050 net zero goals.”

Will Morgan, head of renewables at Alpha Real Capital, added, “Growing demand from consumers for renewable energy underpins renewable energy markets and will lead to more investment opportunity.”

Alpha has completed over 50 transactions and invested or committed more than £600 million into UK renewable energy, providing secure long-term cash flows to investors.

Alpha’s renewables business invests in a wide range of UK renewable energy infrastructure including wind, solar, hydro, and other low carbon energy resources. Alpha’s renewables portfolio generates over 340 GWh of clean energy – enough to power over 110,000 homes, an annual CO2 offset equivalent to planting almost 50 million trees.

Phillip Rose, Alpha CEO, commented, “Alpha has been a major investor in renewable energy infrastructure and along with our commitment to investing in social infrastructure, health care and education, forms a key pillar of our sustainable investment strategy.”

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