As part of its INFRAGREEN IV strategy, the green infrastructure financing platform RGREEN INVEST has set up a dedicated investment line for innovative infrastructure projects developed by Sun’Agri, a company specialising in dynamic agrivoltaics. The purpose of this long-term partnership is to support the projects developed by Sun’Agri, namely dynamic coupling solutions between agriculture and photovoltaics.
With INFRAGREEN IV and the support of its investors, RGREEN INVEST is committed to helping developers adapt to climate change
After a first closing of €384 million in December 2019, INFRAGREEN IV, which has been awarded the “Greenfin France Green Finance label”, is rolling out its investment strategy and focusing on infrastructure projects related to climate change adaptation. “We have the support of our French and foreign institutional investors who are keen to support the energy and climate transition. INFRAGREEN’s solutions enable financial capital to be directed to the financing of a low-carbon economy and to achieving the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals”, says Nicolas Rochon, President of RGREEN INVEST.
INFRAGREEN IV is the fourth edition of the INFRAGREEN range of investment solutions developed by RGREEN INVEST. INFRAGREEN IV invests in equity and junior debt in infrastructure projects linked to the energy and climate transition in the European Economic Area. “This operation is a concrete example of our ability to design investments aimed at supporting entrepreneurs over the long term and the first to be dedicated to the adaptation of agriculture to climate change through innovative, scientifically proven and economically viable projects”, explains Nicolas Rochon.
Sun’Agri, a pioneer in dynamic agrivoltaics, is deploying its system on projects in real-world conditions
Sun’Agri responds to the urgency of climate change by providing farmers with a ground-breaking innovation that improves their yields in a sustainable manner while also generating solar energy. Similar to Venetian blinds, agrivoltaics consists of mobile solar panels located at a sufficient height above the plants to allow for ventilation and the passage of agricultural machinery. Controlled by tailor-made algorithms and artificial intelligence, the solar panels tilt according to the sunlight and shade needs of the crops, thereby promoting their well-being. The technology is particularly well suited to areas and perennial crops that are most affected by climate change, such as those in the south of France.
“Agriculture faces two major challenges: ever more intense climate change, which requires the implementation of adaptation solutions for agriculture; and the urgent need to stop the artificialisation of agricultural land caused by certain solar developers”, says Antoine Nogier, founder of Sun’Agri. “Thanks to the work we have been doing for the past 11 years with our partners, which is unparalleled anywhere in the world, we are now taking up these challenges to offer effective, profitable and sustainable solutions for agriculture. This partnership with RGREEN INVEST confirms the interest of financial institutions in our technology and will enable the financing of projects led by farmers who trust us.”
On 1 April 2020, Sun’Agri was one of the winners of the solar innovation tender issued by the French Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE). The combined capacity of these projects amounts to 30 MWp, accounting for 75% of the total in the agrivoltaics segment. This technology combines the protection of agricultural production with photovoltaics while prioritising the plant’s needs, in accordance with the CRE specifications. Over the next two years, they will be constructed on vineyards, orchards and vegetable farms on revitalised farmland in the south of France.
As France’s Minister of the Ecological Transition, Elisabeth Borne, has put it,
“The health crisis we are currently experiencing must in no way cause us to abandon the ambitious objectives for the development of renewable energies set out in the multi-annual energy plan.”
About RGREEN INVEST
RGREEN INVEST is an independent French management company under the umbrella of the RGREEN group, founded in 2010 by Nicolas Rochon, that specialises in financing green infrastructure. As the first company to offer a complete range of tailor-made financing solutions, RGREEN INVEST serves the actors involved in Europe’s energy transition.
With around 20 experienced professionals, RGREEN INVEST boasts one of the largest teams of specialists in the financing of infrastructure projects linked to the energy and climate transition in France. RGREEN INVEST is committed to addressing climate change and has integrated ESG considerations into its investment criteria, thereby enabling institutional investors to participate in the energy transition while sharing the financial returns with them.
With €1 billion under management, RGREEN INVEST has financed projects in France and Europe, equivalent to an installed capacity of more than 1.6 GW, thus avoiding nearly 550,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions (according to an internal calculation by RGREEN INVEST).