Equinor outlays $84mn on minority shareholding in Scatec Solar ASA
Equinor ASA has acquired 11,020,000 shares in Scatec Solar ASA, corresponding to 9.7% of the shares and votes, at a total purchase price of approximately $82.4mn.
Equinor will flag a shareholding of just over 10% of Scatec Solar. This includes shares owned by Equinor ASA as well as shares managed by Equinor Asset Management ASA. The global solar business has grown approximately 40% per year over the last decade and is anticipated to continue growing rapidly. Solar energy has also made the fastest cost improvements in the renewable sector and is expected to be a major and material source of renewable power in the future.
Partnering with Scatec Solar, Equinor entered its first solar development project in 2017 via the Apodi asset in Brazil, followed by a second joint project in June 2018 with the Guanizul 2A in Argentina. Equinor has also developed a sizeable offshore wind portfolio, and is the operator for Sheringham Shoal (317 MW), Dudgeon (402 MW) and Hywind Scotland (30MW). In addition, Equinor is partner in the Arkona wind farm (E.on operated, 378 MW), and has several other wind projects in the pipeline.
Scatec Solar, an integrated independent solar power producer, produces electricity from operating plants with installed capacity of 357 MW and has another 1,057 MW under construction. The company has a project backlog and pipeline of about 4.3 GW under development in the Americas, Africa, Asia and the Middle East. Scatec Solar is headquartered in Oslo, Norway.
Pal Eitrheim, Executive Vice President for New Energy Solutions in Equinor commented: “The investment in Scatec Solar will increase Equinor’s exposure to a fast-growing renewable sector, further complementing Equinor’s portfolio with profitable solar energy. This is in line with our strategy to develop into a broad energy company.”
“Scatec Solar is our existing partner in Brazil and Argentina and we value their capabilities and experience. They are a competitive and well-respected solar company and we are supportive of Scatec Solar’s management, board of directors and strategy. This minority stake of around 10% is made with a long-term perspective,” says Eitrheim.
All but two UK regions failing on school energy efficiency
Most schools are still "treading water" on implementing energy efficient technology, according to new analysis of Government data from eLight.
Yorkshire & the Humber and the North East are the only regions where schools have collectively reduced how much they spend on energy per pupil, cutting expenditure by 4.4% and 0.9% respectively. Every other region of England increased its average energy expenditure per pupil, with schools in Inner London doing so by as much as 23.5%.
According to The Carbon Trust, energy bills in UK schools amount to £543 million per year, with 50% of a school’s total electricity cost being lighting. If every school in the UK implemented any type of energy efficient technology, over £100 million could be saved each year.
Harvey Sinclair, CEO of eEnergy, eLight’s parent company, said the figures demonstrate an uncomfortable truth for the education sector – namely that most schools are still treading water on the implementation of energy efficient technology. Energy efficiency could make a huge difference to meeting net zero ambitions, but most schools are still lagging behind.
“The solutions exist, but they are not being deployed fast enough," he said. "For example, we’ve made great progress in upgrading schools to energy-efficient LED lighting, but with 80% of schools yet to make the switch, there’s an enormous opportunity to make a collective reduction in carbon footprint and save a lot of money on energy bills. Our model means the entire project is financed, doesn’t require any upfront expenditure, and repayments are more than covered by the energy savings made."
He said while it has worked with over 300 schools, most are still far too slow to commit. "We are urging them to act with greater urgency because climate change won’t wait, and the need for action gets more pressing every year. The education sector has an important part to play in that and pupils around the country expect their schools to do so – there is still a huge job to be done."
North Yorkshire County Council is benefiting from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme, which has so far awarded nearly £1bn for energy efficiency and heat decarbonisation projects around the country, and Craven schools has reportedly made a successful £2m bid (click here).
The Department for Education has issued 13 tips for reducing energy and water use in schools.