The Church Pension Fund has invested $30 million into a fund that will provide loans for renewable energy in developing markets.
Wespath Benefits and Investments, a general agency of the United Methodist Church, also invested $30 million into the $60.8 million Developing World Markets’ Off-Grid, Renewable and Climate Action (ORCA) Impact Note.
The ORCA Impact Note will provide renewable energy finance loans to social businesses in the developing world and is composed of 11 underlying loans made to inclusive financial institutions and operating companies. These organizations support renewable energy creation and services in nine countries across three continents, including Ecuador, Guatemala, India, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Mongolia, Nicaragua, Rwanda, and Tanzania.
“The Church Pension Fund was pleased to serve as an anchor investor, which helped bring other investors to the table to provide renewable energy finance loans to social businesses in the developing world,” said Roger Sayler, managing director and chief investment officer of CPF. “This investment will impact the lives of people on three different continents and is reflective of our commitment to doing good while earning a competitive rate of return.”
This transaction follows two previous socially responsible investments with Cheyne Capital’s Social Property Impact Fund and the Avanath Capital Management’s Affordable Housing Fund in 2016. CPF has socially responsible investments in 23 countries, bringing its current total commitment to socially responsible investing to nearly $1 billion.
In its socially responsible funds, CPF targets investments in women- and minority-owned firms; economically targeted initiatives, including urban redevelopment, affordable housing, sustainable agriculture, and microfinance; and environmental programs that invest in sustainable forestry, clean technology, and green buildings.