Arizona has more than 3,800 hours of sunshine a year – equivalent to over 10 hours a day. It is the sunniest state in the US but several others, including California, Nevada and New Mexico, are not far behind. America is a sunny place and that makes it ideally-suited to solar energy.
To the outside world, the US may seem an unlikely place to bang the drum for renewable energy these days. President Trump is a well-known climate-change sceptic, a keen supporter of the oil and gas industry and publicly opposed to any greenhouse gas-curbing policies that jeopardise US jobs.
At an individual state level however, attitudes are very different. Most US states have clean energy targets and even those which do not are increasingly interested in renewable power, particularly solar.
President Trump is a well-known climate-change sceptic but individual states’ attitudes are very different
A small maiden dividend will be paid this November, but payments should rise significantly once the plants start producing and selling energy.
Over time, US Solar Fund is likely to raise more money on the stock market to expand its portfolio and build new farms. Size brings cost efficiencies, so the larger the portfolio, the more profitable US Solar is likely to be.
In time, the fund may invest in battery storage too. Today, the cost of storing energy via batteries is prohibitive but the economics are changing fast. Once storage becomes commercially viable, US Solar can store some of the energy it creates during daylight hours and sell it for night-time use, thereby increasing overall revenues.
Midas verdict: The US Solar Fund offers UK investors access to a fast-growing renewable energy market, with a robust long-term outlook. An attractive investment, despite President Trump’s antipathy.