A huge new push into Spanish solar will allow Total to run its entire European operations on renewable electricity in what the French oil supermajor claimed adds up to the world’s largest corporate power deal of its type.
Total signed an agreement with local developer Ignis to develop 3.3GW of solar plants in the Madrid and Andalusia regions, with full power production by 2025.
The Ignis partnership follows a similar deal earlier this year with Powertis and Solarbay to build about 2GW of Spanish PV.
Total said once the plants are in operation by the middle of the decade it will buy almost 6TWh of solar power from 3GW of the arrays, enough to cover the entire power needs of its European industrial sites and eliminating about 2 million tonnes of emissions annually.
The latest Spanish capacity will play a key role in meeting Total’s target to develop a gross 25GW of renewables by 2025, and as part of its wider net-zero emissions-reduction ambitions that were unveiled earlier this year.
“This will be the largest corporate PPA in the world,” claimed Total. “Thanks to its electricity trading capabilities, the group will thus be able to supply all its European sites with competitive green electricity, in line with its objective of carbon neutrality.”
Total CEO Patrick Pouyanne said the agreement "demonstrates the value of integrating production, trading and sales in the electricity chain”.
Renewable power has been the subject of increasingly large deals by corporations globally over recent years, notably from technology giants such as Google, which was the largest corporate buyer of green energy last year with 2.7GW of commitments, according to BloombergNEF data.
Although the varying structures of the deals makes direct comparisons of corporate renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs) difficult, Total's 6TWh commitment dwarfs, for example, the 1.65TWh bought by Norsk Hydro from Swedish wind power that was hailed as a breakthrough for renewable PPAs in 2018.
Financial terms of details of Total’s stake in the Ignis projects were not disclosed, but the fossil giant said the Spanish group would be paid as the projects are developed.
The new Spanish deal adds to major solar agreements struck in India and Qatar that mean the French oil group has taken positions in about 8GW of PV development in 2020 alone, adding to its long-standing place in the solar market via control of US subsidiary SunPower.
Total's renewables push has also gone well beyond solar, with forays into onshore and offhsore wind, the latter including floating turbines, energy storage, and EV batteries.
Total is on 30 September due to give more details to investors on its climate and renewables plans as part of a corporate strategy update.