EIB and Iberdrola agree $1.7bn deal for 22 energy projects

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European Investment Bank (EIB) and Iberdrola agree to financing of 19 solar power plants and three onshore wind farms in Spain, Portugal and Germany.

With a total installed capacity of 2.2GW, the EIB and Iberdrola have agreed to a joint investment of more than €1.7bn to help accelerate the energy transition and boost supply security, climate action and social cohesion in Europe. The operation is part of the EIB’s financing package in support of REPowerEU, the EU plan to strengthen Europe’s energy autonomy.

Along with installing significant new capacity, the projects will facilitate the integration of renewables into grids – seen as a challenge to achieving Europe’s climate objectives. Some of the photovoltaic projects will include hybridisation with wind power and battery systems for energy storage.

Hybrid systems generate solar energy when the sun shines and wind energy when the wind blows, with integrated systems complementing each other and sharing the same connection point to guarantee a more stable supply to the grid. Energy storage is a fundamental pillar of the energy transition by adding flexibility to the generation of renewable energy and allowing a better integration into the system.

EIB vice president Ricardo Mourinho Felix said: “This major financing agreement covering three countries highlights the EIB’s continued firm commitment to accelerating the energy transition in Europe and to ensuring access to affordable, clean power for all Europeans. This is a strategic objective for the European Union and the EIB that will not only contribute to climate change mitigation, but also to the EU’s energy security and strategic autonomy. As the horrific war in Ukraine has shown, sustainable energy and energy security are two sides of the same coin.”

The new installations will provide green energy equal to the average annual energy consumption of more than a million households and they will be mostly located in cohesion regions, where per-capita-income is lower than EU average. The investments made under this agreement will boost economic growth and employment in the regions where these renewable energy facilities are installed. These new projects will also support the national energy plans of the three countries, and help Iberdrola achieve its 2040 net zero emissions target.

Iberdrola executive chairman Ignacio Galán added: “As one of the main partners of the EIB, it is a pleasure for us to have the bank support again through this loan, which represents a significant contribution to accelerate Europe’s energy independence in line with the REPowerEU Plan of the European Union, achieve climate objectives and continue creating economic growth and employment in the continent.”

The EIB and energy security

In 2022, the EIB Group committed financing more than €17bn for the energy transition in Europe. As this is a top priority for the EU climate bank, Spain received a record €3.1bn in financing for sustainable energy and natural resources projects in the same year, making it the second largest beneficiary of financing in the EU. These investments are seen as vital to helping Europe weather the crisis triggered by the abrupt cut in gas supplies in the aftermath of Russia attack against Ukraine.

Over the next five years, an additional €30bn will be invested on top of the EIB’s existing support for the EU energy sector. The financing pledged under REPowerEU is expected to generate an additional €115bn in investment by 2027, thus making a substantial contribution to Europe’s energy independence and to the EIB Group’s target of mobilising €1tn in climate finance this decade.

Iberdrola’s commitment to renewables and sustainable financing

The operation is part of Iberdrola’s commitment to decarbonisation. As part of this strategy, the company plans to invest more than €47bn between 2023 and 2025 to promote the energy transition, employment and net zero emissions.

Iberdrola continues to move forward with its sustainability strategy, which is based on the electrification of the economy through sustainable energies and oriented towards combating climate change and creating wealth and jobs in the regions where it operates. This funding will enable the company to further strengthen its position in sustainable financing with more than €48bn in ESG operations signed.