Corporations signed a record volume of 5.4 GW of PPA for green energy in 2017, BNEF

Corporations signed a record volume of 5.4 GW of power purchase agreements (PPA) for green energy in 2017, despite looming policy uncertainty in the two most active markets the U.S. and Europe. This was up from 4.3 GW in 2016 and up from a previous record of 4.4 GW in 2015. This 5.4 GW of clean energy contracts were signed by 43 corporations in 10 different countries, according to the »Corporate Energy Market Outlook«, published by Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BNEF).
Corporations have signed contracts to purchase nearly 19 GW of clean power since 2008, an amount comparable to the generation capacity of Portugal, with 76 percent of this activity coming since 2015.
Most of this activity in 2017 occurred in the United States, where 2.8 GW of power purchase agreements were signed by corporations, up 19 percent from 2016. The most notable of these deals was Apple’s 200 MW PPA with NV Energy to purchase electricity from the Techren Solar project, the largest agreement ever signed in the U.S. between a corporation and a utility.
In Europe companies signed over 1 GW, some 95 percent of this volume coming from projects in the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden. Emerging markets also saw newfound activity, with the first onsite corporate PPAs being signed in Burkina Faso, Eritrea, Egypt, Ghana, Namibia, Panama and Thailand. In Australia, corporations signed power purchase agreements for over 400 MW in 2017. Japan and China, however, continue to have few corporate procurement opportunities due to regulatory barriers, though both are undergoing power market reforms that will change things rapidly.
BNEF expects volumes to grow further in 2018, surpassing 2017’s record level of activity. Commitments on the part of companies to use renewable electricity remain the most promising source of demand. Latin America and Asia are expected to attract major activity in 2018 and the coming years. In Mexico, private companies can now sign bilateral PPAs with developers, and major power buyers will also be expected to comply with clean energy mandates, once a new certificate market kicks off in 2018. Large consumers in Argentina are now eligible to purchase clean energy directly from developers, rather than just the national utility, says BNEF.

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