Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) has backed Morrison & Co’s specialist AUD1bn (€634m) clean energy infrastructure fund.

The specialist clean energy financier has invested AUD150m in Morrison & Co Growth Infrastructure Fund, the fund set up to spearhead clean energy standards across Australian social and economic infrastructure assets.

The new vehicle will acquire and develop a diverse range of essential assets, from hospitals to data centres, retirement and aged care accommodation to student housing and renewable energy. 

CEFC CEO Ian Learmonth said: “These assets are central to our economy and our wellbeing, and they are built for the long term.

“We see it as critical that new infrastructure assets are built to the highest possible clean energy standards, and that existing assets are updated with proven technologies that can lower emissions and cut energy use.”

Paul Newfield, Morrison & Co chief investment officer, said: “With our fundamental belief in decarbonisation as an investment strategy, we see the CEFC as an ideal partner for this fund.”

The Australian infrastructure sector accounts for almost half the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Rory Lonergan, CEFC investment funds lead, said the scale of Australia’s infrastructure sector means it is just not possible for one investor to finance the kind of sustainability measures required to make a meaningful impact on overall emissions.

“That’s why it is critical that investors such as Morrison & Co take the lead in establishing specialist clean energy focused investable products,” he added.

“By investing in this fund we are providing other sustainability-focused institutional investors with a new way to tap into this market while also delivering on their own sustainability goals.”

The CEFC has previously invested AUD150m in the IFM Australian Infrastructure Fund and AUD150m in debt finance for the Moorebank Logistics Park, to remove emissions-intensive trucks from Australian roads.