Iberdrola Renovables growth plans for wind power in the US receive boost with some $1,000 million of incentives

Its ambitious renewables targets and regulatory framework make the US the wind energy market with the strongest growth potential for Iberdrola Renovables. This week the US government awarded the company $109 million in grants for its investment in the Peñascal II wind farm.

Iberdrola Renovables has now received $976 million of these grants in the US, which it will reinvest fully in new renewables projects. Iberdrola Renovables plans to install 1,000 MW per year in 2011 and 2012.

Iberdrola Renovables, the world’s largest wind power company, has received a further boost for its US wind energy growth plans with a new grant this week that brings the total amount of stimulus funds for renewable energy approved by the US government for the Company’s wind power projects to $976 million.

These grants, offered as part of the US government’s incentive package for renewable energies to encourage companies to invest in the country, will be crucial in helping the company attain its ambitious targets there. These include the installation of 1,000 MW per year in 2011 and 2012.

The company has pledged to fully reinvest all the grants received in new renewables projects in the US, significantly boosting its activity in the country.

Iberdrola Renovables received the latest of these grants this week, totalling $109 million, for the start-up of its Peñascal II wind farm.

The 202-MW Peñascal II wind farm is part of the Peñascal wind complex, the largest operated by Iberdrola Renovables worldwide with installed capacity of 404 MW.

The Peñascal complex is located in Kenedy County (Texas) and comprises two wind farms: Peñascal I and Peñascal II. The facility is fitted with 168 Mitsubishi MHI 92 wind turbines, with unit capacity of 2.4 MW. Its output meets the energy needs of around 150,000 average US families and prevents the emission of some 120,000 tonnes of CO2.

This facility provides a significant socio-economic boost to the region as it has created 20 direct jobs in the maintenance and operation of the wind farms and an average of more than 200 people were involved in its construction.

The US, a key market

Iberdrola Renovables has become the second largest renewables operator in the US, where it is present in 23 states. It has installed capacity of 3,877 MW spread over 41 wind farms, with some 850 MW currently under construction.

Iberdrola Renovables’ main focus is on wind energy. In fact, the company was the leading player in the country’s wind sector in 2009 (according to figures from the American Wind Energy Association – AWEA), bringing a total of 1,241 MW on stream. It is also studying investments in other technologies, assessing projects that meet the company’s opportunity, sustainability and profitability criteria.

The company has a workforce of 800 employees in the US –nearly half of its total staff– and has created over 14,200 indirect jobs there since 2006. It has also made some $5,500 million of purchases from US companies over the last three years.

With operations in 23 countries, Iberdrola Renovables is the world leader in its sector by both installed capacity (with over 11,400 MW at 30 June 2010) and output (some 13,000 million kWh in the first half of 2010).