Transportation of wind turbine blade at dusk
Transportation of wind turbine blade at dusk


Progress Report 2021

Message from our Group Head, Mark Dooley

2021 will be a defining year in what will be a decisive decade in the fight against climate change. The world will soon meet at COP26 to conduct the most important global climate negotiations since Paris. Set against a backdrop of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) latest report, which shows in stark detail the scale and urgency of the challenge in front of us, the call to action is clear – we must raise our ambition.

In response, we’ve seen a groundswell of countries and corporates committing to net zero, including GIG and our parent company, Macquarie Group (Macquarie). With unprecedented consensus on the destination, the focus now shifts to the pathways and actions that will take us there.

GIG’s north star on this journey remains our mission – to accelerate the green transition. It’s a mission that is, and has always been, fully aligned with a commitment to help the world reach net zero. 

It, therefore, continues to dictate our priorities: delivering new green energy capacity; powering companies and helping them achieve their sustainability goals; and supporting clients to develop new approaches to accelerate and measure their transition. 

Doing more, faster

The challenge we’ve now set ourselves is to raise our own ambitions by doing more, faster. This means driving volume in mature technologies and finding solutions to accelerate the deployment of the new technologies critical to delivering deep decarbonisation.  

By evolving our approach from a focus on investing and developing individual assets to creating, acquiring, and partnering with specialist development businesses that are home to teams of technical experts and significant project portfolios, we’re able to create volume at a more transformational scale.  

It’s an approach we’re using to accelerate the deployment of new technologies, such as battery storage, as much as established technologies, like solar.

Not only does it amplify the impact of our own balance sheet investments by mobilising additional pools of capital, but it also allows us to activate the widest possible pool of specialist talent – locally, regionally, and globally. And by concentrating our efforts on development, we’re able to have the greatest impact on the most critical investment enabling phase of the project lifecycle.

Through this approach, we increased the portfolio's total capacity to over 30 GW across more than 240 projects – from the established markets of the UK and US, to emerging markets including the Philippines and India. It’s testament to the age-old adage that we can achieve more by working together than we can alone, and I pay tribute to all our partners on this journey, without whom this simply would not be possible.

And it’s in that same spirit that we continue to work as an active citizen of the global green advocacy and policy community. This year, I’ve been delighted to represent Macquarie on the Sustainable Markets Initiative’s Financial Services Taskforce, and to support Macquarie CEO Shemara Wikramanayake in her roles co-chairing Climate Finance Leadership Initiative (CFLI) India and leading the Glasgow Financial Alliance for Net Zero’s work in emerging markets. Across GIG and Macquarie we’re engaged in a range of climate and net zero initiatives, and you can read more about these in the working in partnership section of this report.

Our net zero commitment

In May 2021, we took the important step of making our own net zero commitment. While GIG only invests in projects designed to accelerate the green transition, it’s important that all impacts are stated clearly, and commitments put in place to reduce even relatively small residual emissions. We also wanted to recognise that as our approach to accelerating the transition evolves, we’ll need to invest in new technologies and services, particularly where we can help clients and partners in high emissions sectors to decarbonise.

That’s why we committed to achieving net zero from financing activities associated with renewable energy projects by 2030 and to aligning the emissions of financing activities designed to decarbonise high emissions and non-renewable energy sectors with net zero by 2050. 

We believe that net zero commitments require dynamic plans, evolving in line with science and market developments, so we will provide annual updates on our commitment, with detailed plans and progress updates in these annual Progress Reports, from now on. This year, you can learn more in the commitment to net zero section of this report.

Raising the ambition

Finally, I’d like to pay tribute to the phenomenal work of the GIG team in what’s been another extraordinary year. Over 450 people now work under the GIG brand across the globe from engineers, scientists and asset managers to finance, investment and structuring specialists. This diverse team, united by their commitment to accelerating the green transition, have created what I truly believe to be one of the most impactful businesses in the world.

At GIG, we’re resolute in our mission. And while we don’t yet know what the outcome of COP26 will be, the science has shown us what the outcome needs to be. Let’s make sure 2021 is remembered as the year we all stepped up and raised our ambition.

Mark Dooley

Global Head, GIG