Green Projects and the use of PWLB
WRITTEN BY Local Partnerships
POSTED ON 8th January 2021
The long-awaited response to the Public Works Loan Board (PWLB) consultation was published at the end of November. The consultation was aimed at finding equitable means to stop local authorities investing in commercial property portfolios to generate income. Many green projects have a financial payback, indeed for some years only those with good payback managed to get approved, so the means of achieving the desired control without impacting green projects has been of considerable concern.
The consultation has introduced a requirement for the submission of three year capital spending programmes and the confirmation from the s151 officer that they are not making investments for yield.
These new criteria mean that local authorities will need to justify their activities in terms of their non-financial outputs. This is a fundamental change to how many business cases have proceeded in recent years and being able to draw clear lines between carbon reduction strategies and the projects necessary to deliver them will be the context for all project approvals going forward. This will include a clear understanding of carbon saved and how this relates to net zero trajectories.
Local Partnerships is co-owned by the LGA, HM Treasury and the Welsh Government, and we can help authorities seeking to prepare business cases for green projects. For more information please contact Jo Wall, Jo.Wall@localpartnerships.gov.uk or 07770 702 386.