A local government green bond for West Berkshire Council has closed after reaching its £1 million target five days early.
Around 22% of the funds came from residents in West Berkshire, who each invested an average of £3,500, with the Community Municipal Investment (CMI) attracting 640 investors in total.
The CMI structure has been developed by investment platform Abundance, to offer an accessible, low-risk way for local people to support green infrastructure projects in their area by investing directly with their council.
Money raised from the bond is supporting projects including solar panels on five buildings across the district, including schools, leisure and care facilities and the council’s own offices.
It will also go towards funding projects with the Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire Wildlife trust (BBOWT) to protect and enhance the natural environment, upgrade traffic signals to LEDs and cycleways to promote sustainable transport.
The green bond supports West Berkshire’s Environment Strategy, which aims to make the district net zero by 2030.
Lynne Doherty, Leader of West Berkshire Council said: “I’m very pleased that this innovative way of funding the delivery of our Environment Strategy has had such a strong uptake from local people. Not only is it saving the council money but it has allowed local people to get directly involved with our plans to reach Net Zero in the next decade.”