© Shutterstock
  • The loan will be used to build a portfolio of wind and solar energy projects across Italy with a total capacity of 400 MW. They will be Iberdrola’s first renewable energy facilities in Italy.
  • The projects will have a significant impact via their contribution to Italy’s energy security, climate action and social cohesion.

The European Investment Bank (EIB) and Iberdrola have signed a new agreement to accelerate the energy transition in Italy by developing new renewable energy plants. The EU bank has granted a €150 million green loan to build a portfolio of wind and solar energy projects with a total capacity of around 400 MW. These new facilities will provide green, competitive energy equal to the average energy use of up to 260 000 households. The projects will involve a total investment of over €300 million.

The EIB will finance small and medium-sized solar and wind plants and their connection infrastructure. They will mostly be located in EU cohesion regions in southern Italy. The financing will also include ancillary infrastructure such as access roads, substations and interconnectors. This investment will not only expand clean energy generation, but also improve security of supply. It will boost economic growth and employment in the regions concerned. As a whole, the new infrastructure will create approximately 600 person-years of temporary work during the construction phase.

EIB Vice-President Gelsomina Vigliotti said: “It is a priority for the EU climate bank to provide financing to ensure a resilient and sustainable energy supply. We are delighted to work with Iberdrola on developing its first renewable plants in Italy, confirming our commitment to achieving climate goals.”

Iberdrola CEO Ignacio Galán added: “This new green loan taken out with the EIB expands our contribution to a Europe that is able to meet its climate objectives and increase its energy autonomy. The European Investment Bank’s leadership is key to achieving this.”

“Iberdrola is committed to boosting green energy in Italy, a heavily industrialised country that is very important to the European economy,” said country manager of Iberdrola Renovables Italia Valerio Faccenda. “It already has a project portfolio of almost 3 000 MW, including a 23 MW solar power plant that is already operational and a further four projects that have received authorisation and are close to starting construction, for a total of 116 MW. In line with the ambitious growth targets, in December Iberdrola formed JV iCUBE Renewables in Italy. This development platform has an initial portfolio of more than 600 MW that will give even more impetus to Iberdrola’s growth in the country.”

The EIB and energy security

In October 2022, the EIB Board of Directors decided to raise the Group’s clean energy financing volumes to unprecedented levels in support of the REPowerEU objective of ending Europe’s dependence on Russian fossil fuel imports. Over the next five years, an additional €30 billion will be invested on top of the EIB’s already robust support for the EU energy sector. The REPowerEU package is expected to generate an additional €115 billion in investment by 2027, thus making a substantial contribution to Europe’s energy independence and to the EIB Group’s target of mobilising €1 trillion in climate finance this decade.

Find out more about the EIB’s support for the energy sector here and about the latest energy projects we have financed here.

Iberdrola expands its sources of financing

Iberdrola is continuing to move forward with its sustainability strategy, which is based on the electrification of the economy 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 leading position in sustainable financing. At the end of September, Iberdrola’s net debt amounted to €44.293 billion: the current green bond operation worth over €16 billion; around the same amount in environmental, social and governance credit lines; €5 billion in commercial paper; and around €3 billion in loans and structured financing. All of this is sustainable.

The projects funded with this kind of financing are in line with the following UN Sustainable Development Goals on which Iberdrola is focusing: SDG 7 (affordable and clean energy) and SDG 13 (climate action).

Background information:

Over the past decade, the European Investment Bank Group has channelled almost €100 billion into the European Union’s energy sector. These vital investments are now helping Europe weather the crisis triggered by the abrupt cut in Russian gas supplies. In the first nine months of 2022 alone, the EIB signed financial support totalling more than €8.3 billion for projects in energy efficiency, renewables, electricity and storage in the European Union, thus helping to strengthen the resilience of the European economy.