Wells Fargo’s renewable-energy-finance pioneer Barry Neal will retire July 1, and Philip Hopkins will assume sole leadership of the company’s Renewable Energy & Environmental Finance business, which is part of Wells Fargo Commercial Capital.

For more than a decade, Neal and Hopkins jointly led the group, building the business into one of the largest and most consistent tax-equity investors in the U.S.

Under Neal’s and Hopkins’ direction, Renewable Energy & Environmental Finance has grown to more than 30 experienced professionals who are responsible for evaluating, negotiating, and managing equity investments in wind, solar, and other renewable energy projects.

To date, Wells Fargo has funded more than $7.5 billion into more than 400 wind and solar projects throughout the U.S.

“Over the past 13 years we’ve thoughtfully and strategically built our reputation as a quiet but significant contributor to the advancement of U.S. renewable energy,” Hopkins said. “I’m excited about the opportunity to continue building upon this solid foundation.”

Prior to joining Wells Fargo in 2005, Hopkins was director of strategy and business analysis at Mirant Corporation in Atlanta, where he also steered a large acquisition of shares in a German utility as a business development director. Earlier, Hopkins worked for the New England Power Company as a senior engineer and as a field engineer for Schlumberger Well Services.

Neal spent 37 years in the energy and environmental sectors. He joined Wells Fargo in 2006 after spending more than 20 years in project development, consulting, and investment management, including as managing director of Energy Investors Funds Group, a private equity firm in the independent power sector.