FINANCE: The Green Investment Bank will plough  £18m into a biomass facility for Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, in the bank’s first investment in the NHS.

GIB will lend the cash to help provide a combined heat and power unit, biomass boiler and dual fuel boilers for heat recovery from medical incineration.

The energy facility - to be developed and operated by Mitie - will provide heat and power to the trust’s Addenbrooke’s and Rosie Hospitals. GIB said the facility would save the trust more than £20m in energy cost over the 25 year project, and cut CO2 by 25,000 tonnes a year.

The project, which is subject to final planning approval, needs £36m of investment, and the balance will be provided the Aviva Investors REaLM Infrastructure Fund.

GIB chairman Lord Smith of Kelvin said: “Non-domestic energy efficiency is a priority sector for the Green Investment Bank and this deal is an early demonstration of our strategy to partner with co-investors and deliver a commercial return to the bank, whilst reducing carbon emissions in the UK.”

The funds for the Cambridge Hospital Trust are part of GIB’s investment of £50m to the Aviva Investors REaLM Energy Centres Fund, which specialises in investment in non-domestic UK energy centres, one of the GIB’s priority investment sectors.

Business secretary Vince Cable said: “The size of the NHS estate means there will be huge opportunities to invest further in building energy centres like the one planned for Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.”

GIB’s priority investment sectors include waste, non-domestic energy efficiency as well as offshore wind and the Green Deal. It will also invest in biomass power, biofuels for transport, carbon capture and storage, marine energy and renewable heat.