NS&I to launch three-year Green Savings Bonds
The bonds will be available to savers aged 16 and over, pay a fixed interest rate over a three-year term, and have a minimum investment of £100 and a maximum limit of £100,000 per person. However, the interest rate for the savings accounts has not yet been announced. Customers must have a UK bank account capable of receiving BACS payments.
Green Savings Bonds will help finance the government’s green spending projects designed to tackle climate change and make the environment greener and more sustainable. These projects will include making transport greener, using renewable energy over fossil fuels, preventing pollution, using energy more efficiently, protecting natural resources and adapting to a changing climate.
Money held in the bonds will be passed to the Treasury and held in a general account. It will then release funds equivalent to the amount raised from the bonds to green projects within two years. It will report on how the money is spent, and the environmental benefits achieved.
Ian Ackerley, NS&I chief executive, said: “We are delighted to be offering a new savings product on behalf of the government and playing a key role in contributing towards the UK’s green agenda. This exciting new bond will be available to purchase from nsandi.com later this year and will give UK savers the opportunity to contribute towards green projects to help make the world greener, cleaner and more sustainable.”
The bonds are designed to be held for the whole three-year term, but with a cooling-off period in the first 30 days of investment. The fixed rate is guaranteed for the whole term. Interest is earned daily and added once a year on the investment’s anniversary, and paid on maturity.
Sarah Coles, personal finance analyst at Hargreaves Lansdown, said: “The N&I Green Savings Bond will let savers put their money where their mouth is, and support sustainable projects with their savings. But while it’s a useful addition to the growing world of green savings, there are already accounts with similar aims on offer. What really matters here is the rate, and NS&I is remaining tight-lipped on that front.
“So far, all we know is that the bond will support projects that aim to tackle climate change and make the environment greener and more sustainable – like green transport, renewable energy, and energy efficiency. This isn’t enormously far from the aims of existing ethical savings accounts from the likes of Triodos Bank.”
Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced the bonds in the Budget in March.
More details about the bonds will be announced later in the year and they will be available to buy and manage online at nsandi.com