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03 Nov 2008 05:11:45

Brown sets up £250m clean tech fund

Brown sets up £250m clean tech fund
Up to £250 million will be used to make venture capital investments in clean energy businesses, prime minister Gordon Brown announced, during a visit to Qatar.

Mr Brown secured £150 million for the Qatar-UK Clean Technology Investment Fund from the Qatar Investment Authority to fund clean technology development.

According to the Carbon Trust, which will manage the fund through its advisory firm CT Investment Partners LLP, the move demonstrates commitment by the government to create partnerships with fossil fuel producing countries and consumer countries to move to a low carbon economy.

Mr Brown said: "Today’s announcement is an excellent example of the partnerships we need between oil producing and oil consuming countries to develop new energy sources and technologies, diversifying our economies and reducing our carbon emissions. I’m very pleased that the Carbon Trust will be working with the Government of Qatar to help bring about the move to a global low carbon economy."

As well as making funds available for UK companies, the partnership will also investigate setting up a Low Carbon Innovation Centre in Qatar.

A French oil executive has urged governments to support the development of clean energy sources because the low price of oil could make them uneconomical and hinder their development.

Speaking to the Financial Times, Christophe de Margerie, chief executive of Total, warned that environmental initiatives must not be abandoned.

He noted that lower oil prices could reduce the development of the oil industry, making it difficult to produce enough energy for future demand.



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