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Hedge funds snap up free money from UK poor

From a correspondent in the world of big finance (edited for clarity).

The current appetite from US hedge funds is for UK solar. Indeed most asset managers want to get their hands on these assets. In a low-yield world, they offer >15% returns for the risk (which is mainly regulatory). The UK has little development risk, so as you well know, it's a redistribution of taxpayer money into the hands of hedge funds under the guise of climate change mitigation. Given that Ed Milliband created the DECC and with the likely failure of the Tories to gain a majority, they see little regulatory risk after the election. What we find appalling is the lack of awareness in the MSM over these transactions and the flow of money from poor to rich.

[To my correspondent: I tried to respond to your email, but the message bounced.]

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Reader Comments (19)

There is a twisted logic that suggests that once people can make money from being green then it will become self sustaining. 'There's nothing wrong with making money off something you believe in' has been said to me more than once. It seems that robbing from the poor to pay the rich is fine so long as the tights are green.

May 5, 2015 at 10:19 AM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

Actually, solar (though a tiny amount of power from a relatively very large space) is probably now viable standalone in sunny parts of the world. Given that people pay around 1/10th of the local currency unit (pounds, dollars) per kwh, the annual revenue from 50 MW of solar electricity is several million, which pays for the 500 (approx) million capital cost in around 20 years

May 5, 2015 at 10:41 AM | Unregistered CommenterMikky

Ooh the irony -

Climate change act traitor - RED Ed Miliband set it in train, PV arrays stuck in fields which should be used for growing crops and enforced subsidization by the poor old consumer - making money for the hedgers WA HEY! ....I'm wondering - does he [RED ED] get a cut - I wouldn't put it past him, for we all know at heart that, Socialists are just wannabe capitalists.

May 5, 2015 at 11:07 AM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

It is a little known fact that the current and previous Government is subsidising unlawful development. For example a developer could put up a solar farm unlawfully, ie without planning permission, and the RO Order 2009 as amended 2014 (thus approved by Labour and the Coalition) enables the developer to claim the subsidy. There is nothing DECC or Ofgem can do to stop the developer getting the subsidy. Yet more madness that came from Ed Miliband and was continued by Ed Davey.

May 5, 2015 at 11:19 AM | Registered CommenterPhillip Bratby

lead article on the business pages of today's DT? £200 billion cost of Liebore's plans to enshrine their idiocies in law!

May 5, 2015 at 11:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterAdam Gallon

It will be interesting to see how certain share values change, as a result of the UK election. A sort of barometer, indicating man's financial assessment of political interference in climate change economics.

Artificial subsdies benefit artificial science. Where will one be without the other?

May 5, 2015 at 12:16 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

I'm afraid that when confronted with this reality the green-minded folks tend to just suggest that the poor be given extra money so they can afford it. Easy-peasy....but who is then paying? Well, as per usual, the already soaked-to-the-skin middle classes.

And then they can run-down the subsidies for renewables until they morph into taxes (as in Spain) so that the only winners will be wide-boys that sell off their eco-holdings before that happens then make more money from put options on the doomed eco-businesses.

May 5, 2015 at 12:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterJamesG

What a winner it could be if Cameron would give a "cast iron " promise to scrap the Climate Change Act and the DECC in one fell swoop. I may then consider him a Conservative!

May 5, 2015 at 12:50 PM | Unregistered CommenterDerek Buxton

Different year, same greed good ..

The coming shape of 2014.


May 5, 2015 at 1:02 PM | Unregistered CommenterPointman

When I heckled 'tax the wind farms' at the UKIP conference it was greeted with laughter and applause. I've been trying to get UKIP to commit to taxing the subsidies on 'renewables' at 100%. No luck so far but who knows?

Would I invest in renewables if I were a hedge fund? No.But that's not what will happen. The 'assets' will be bundled up, sliced and diced, sold off to the gullible and the sharks will cruise on, looking for more victims.

You know, sometimes people whose only motivation is money are very hard to understand.


May 5, 2015 at 1:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterJulian Flood

Isn't it strange that the Church of England are encouraging divestment of fossil fuel stocks while at the same time putting solar panels on church rooves?

May 5, 2015 at 1:25 PM | Unregistered CommenterCapell

As a farmer I've received multiple offers to put solar panels on my land, as I apparently have a very good site that ticks all the boxes. Despite the extreme financial incentives (we are talking a rent of £800-1000/acre index linked and guaranteed for 25 years for areas up to 100 acres) I have sent them all away with fleas in their ears, as I couldn't sleep at night knowing that the money that was landing in my account every quarter was being extracted from the bank accounts of the poor and needy in the form of higher energy bills. I find it morally distasteful that this whole Green energy thing is being financed in such a way. Regardless of whether you think its all necessary (I don't), to finance it in this hidden way, that takes money from the poorest and gives it to the already wealthy (landowners such as myself, and those with large amounts of capital to invest) is utterly morally bankrupt. Particularly when those promoting the policy know full well that if they were open and honest about the cost, and put it on income tax, or some other transparent way people could see where they were paying more, the public wouldn't stand for it.

The whole thing just makes me sick.

May 5, 2015 at 2:07 PM | Unregistered CommenterJim

@Capell: Yes & still buying fossil fuels to heat the churches in the winter, lucky if they're in town with gas available, not so lucky the rural churches heated with oil. Personally I cannot see the point of solar panels on the roofs when they can't store the electricity for use!

May 5, 2015 at 3:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterAlan the Brit


Perhaps you should redo the sums allowing for a) 5% interest to fund the investment, and b) the ongoing cost of maintenance etc. A 20 year payback is basically uneconomic as soon as the interest is 1/20th of the capital investment - it never pays off.

May 5, 2015 at 5:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterIt doesn't add up...

this is indeed a major problem ...

here in Belgium, one of the biggest recipients of "carbon credits" is Lakshmi Mittal ... for those of you reading Dutch, this is a primer ...

another captain of industry is Fernand Huts ... he's not a recepient of carbon credits, but has installed solar panels on the roofs of his man, many warehouses in the Port of Antwerp ... here it is the marxist PVDA (but even they are right from time to time ...) explaining the subsidies from average Joe to the happy few ... ...

I admire those guys as entrepeneurs ... but from time to time, Government gives them such opportunities that it isn't funny anymore ...

and all of that happens under the benevolent eyes of trade unions and socialist (but also other ...) parties ...

May 5, 2015 at 6:50 PM | Unregistered Commenterducdorleans

"I'm wondering - does he [RED ED] get a cut - I wouldn't put it past him, for we all know at heart that, Socialists are just wannabe capitalists."

May 5, 2015 at 11:07 AM | Athelstan.

He is sure to get his reward in heaven, or more correctly, life after politics. All those people he has 'helped' will not forget him in his dotage (if anyone can tell the difference).

May 5, 2015 at 8:06 PM | Unregistered CommenterAllan M

"The whole thing just makes me sick."

+1 million.

Good on you Jim for it's hard,

The hardest thing in life is to carry and observe the onerous burden of moral conscience. Hedgers dispense with conscience - so convenient but all wrong doing comes home to revisit you just at the most unexpected moments, in time life is an equalizer if you know what I mean, for no good deed is unheeded and rest assured all bad deeds will be 'corrected' - all men have to pay their dues.

Whereas, other than the cares of the human condition the righteous have no fear. Slings and arrows mean that life can get very miserable for there is no feather bed landing and life is tough - particularly in farming but there are some pretty miraculous rewards too, nature so unforgiving - harsh and yet so bounteous is a wonder. At last does family bring joy, tears grounding and comfort.

I can offer you only my deep respect Sir.

Good people are in the minority, though I like to think that, there are more than a few 'here'.

May 6, 2015 at 12:37 AM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

Yep +1 Honest Farmer @Jim

May 7, 2015 at 5:18 AM | Registered Commenterstewgreen
May 30, 2015 at 5:32 PM | Unregistered CommenterRussell

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