Since its founding in 1988, DE Shaw has grown to become one of the top hedge funds in the world. Now, it manages over $50 billion in assets and is known for its unusual hiring philosophy, which has helped the company recruit mathematicians, physicists, computer scientists, and others to make successful quantitative investments.
But what most people don’t know about DE Shaw is that it has been investing in renewable energy since 2005. It also finances and operates renewable energy projects through DESRI, or DE Shaw Renewable Investments.
DESRI’s primary goal is to increase long-term contracted renewable energy. And it has already built a portfolio of 42 wind and solar projects, the company says. Just yesterday, DESRI finalized financing for its the Sigurd Solar Project. The project will be a solar farm based out of Utah — and here’s what it’s about.
About the Sigurd Solar Project
Located in Sevier County Utah, the Sigurd Solar project will occupy 600 acres of land. The 80-megawatt solar facility can generate enough energy to power 18,500 homes, according to a DE Shaw press release.
The solar project will also create over 300 jobs and generate significant tax revenue for Sevier County. Further, the project will sell energy to electric power company PacifiCorp over a 25-year agreement. And it will become a new solar power provider to Facebook.
Even though DESRI faced problems in “acquisition, financing, and tax equity investments” during Covid-19, the project still expects to reach commercial use in 2021.
“We look forward to having DESRI in our county and working with them to establish the renewable energy industry in Sevier County,” says Sevier County Commissioner Garth Ogden.
DE Shaw joins other organizations in pushing solar projects
At the moment, approximately 65% of our global greenhouse emissions by gas are fossil fuels, according to an EPA report. So projects like the one DE Shaw just financed can help to play a role in transitioning to renewables.
Other financial institutions are beginning to invest in renewable energy too. For instance, Landsdowne Partners, one of Europes largest investment firms, allocated $1.2 billion to renewable energy.
Shell, one of the largest gas providers, has also controversially set between $4 billion to $6 billion from 2016 until 2020 for green energy projects. Many technology giants, including Apple, Google, and Microsoft have already opted to power at least some of their operations with renewable energy.
Jalen Xing is a Writer at theRising and the co-founder of Students For Hospitals. You can pitch him stories at jalen.xing [at] gmail [dot] com.