€44bn were invested in European renewable energy plants in one year – Renewables attract double the investments of fossil fuels
Source: United Nations Environment Programme, 2016
Investments made in renewable energy plants stay in Europe and help the European economy.
In 2015, 17% of global investments in renewable energy plants were in the EU. This is more than double the investments in new coal and gas plants.
The European renewable energy industry generates a turnover of €144bn annually.
Sources: UNEP, 2016; EurObserv’ER, 2015
Caithness, Scotland: Driving investments in tidal energy
Tidal energy is driving investment in European technologies and projects. One such project is MeyGen – the first multi-megawatt tidal farm in the world.
The project’s developer, Atlantis Resources, has raised over €60m to finance its first development phase, which is now delivering power to the UK electricity grid.
When completed, the full MeyGen project 398MW will produce enough power for 175 000 homes. Such projects are a significant opportunity for commercial debt and equity providers to invest in Europe’s energy transition.
In 2016, Equitix, a €2bn fund management outfit, announced a partnership with Atlantis Resources, which would see them acquiring a 25% stake in each of Atlantis’ Scottish projects, representing an investment commitment in the hundreds of millions of euros.
Lille, France: Recycling infrastructure investment powers local bus fleet
Recycling organic urban waste enables cities and municipalities to attract green investment, create local jobs and produce renewable energy. This is the case of Lille’s metropolitan area in northern France that has one of Europe’s most advanced recycling systems.
The core element of this facility is Lille’s Centre for Organic Recovery, a €54m infrastructure investment which treats 108.000 tonnes a year of organic waste from households, hospitals and parks. This investment significantly improved the overall economy of the city in several ways.
The energy bill of the waste facility was reduced by using the energy produced on-site.
100 city buses are powered each year with the 4,11 million m3 of biomethane produced by the facility.
In addition, a new revenue stream is generated by selling 34.000 tonnes of compost to local farmers to fertiliser their fields.