Green finance – a profitable investment strategy? An interview with the COO of enPower.life
26th July 2022
Our COO Behzad Aghababazadeh just completed the Blended Learning on Green Energy and Climate Finance from renewables academy RENAC. In this brief interview, he shares some of the most surprising insights, and how green energy and climate finance helps impact investors.
- Behzad, you just completed a course on Green Energy and Climate Finance from renewables academy RENAC. What was this all about?
The course provides a comprehensive overview of financing of renewable energy and energy efficiency projects from the bank’s perspective. I have always applied such financing methods as an engineer, but this course deepened my existing knowledge and taught me additional skills.
- What is green finance, and how does it relate to our clients as well as our impact investors?
Green finance is all about redirecting the flow of money from the public, private and not-for-profit sectors to sustainable development priorities. It is a partnership between the three main stakeholders: the government, businesses, and citizens. For citizens, it comes down to their awareness of sustainable options, their willingness to pay for them, and whether they live an environmentally friendly lifestyle.
With enPower.life, we want to offer citizens a way in which they can contribute to sustainable development whilst benefitting themselves. Citizens of developed countries in the EU, and in particular Germany because that is where we are based, have the opportunity to invest in solar energy projects and benefit from profitable interest rates and positively impact society. At the same time, we offer a more environmentally friendly lifestyle for the citizens of emerging markets.
- Wouldn’t investors make more money from traditional (non-green) investments though?
Often when we speak about green or climate finance many people believe that it is a type of donation, but the interesting point is that whilst we are helping the planet and making society fairer, evidence is mounting that green businesses offer more economically sustainable and higher returns for investors than non-green investments.
- What is the most surprising thing you learned in your course?
I believe the way that the banks are conducting the project due diligence was a real anchor point in all these topics. You clearly see how they think and evaluate things while as an engineer, you may never have seen such aspects of the project – and even if you have, you don’t know how to manage it. For example, this includes the risk evaluation of the projects and risk mitigation measures that can be applied to minimize the identified risks.
- Why was this course important to you?
It is always nice that you can participate in a diverse environment of professionals who are practicing same thing in different corners of the world and who share their experiences. It gives you a more holistic approach to the reality of the industry and provides better solutions and new food for thought.