Spanish Wind Farm Recognized by UN

Wind farms, solar photovoltaic (PV) systems and biomass facilities managed by Spanish energy company Corporacion Energia Hidroelectrica de Navarra (EHN) were recognized by the UN Centre for Human Settlement (UN-Habitat) as products that improve people’s living conditions on an international level. EHN’s work in the field of renewable energies is now listed in the UN’s best practices database as a resource for others to look to as a business model.

Pamplona, Spain – July 27, 2004 [SolarAccess.com] The International Best Practice Competition is held every two years, and highlights and disseminates business schemes that help to improve the living conditions of people through sustainable practices. EHN was evaluated by a team of technical experts and compared against over 2,000 other businesses for the tangible impact the company’s projects had on improving living conditions; how the programs promoted sustainable practices through social, cultural, economic and environmental terms; and if the programs were a result of work carried out jointly by different players who contributed to strengthening their community. Only 107 businesses were selected for the database, and EHN is one of three businesses with best practices for the energy industry. In assessing EHN’s candidacy the selection committee took into account the company’s decisive contribution to the development of renewable energy sources in Navarre, a sector that was practically unknown fifteen years ago but one that is now capable of generating electricity equivalent to 60 percent of the region’s demand. As a result, the work done by the company will be disseminated internationally through the Best Practices database to Improve the Living Environment, maintained by UN-Habitat. It will also be included in the Spanish Habitat Committee’s Catalogue of Best Practice. The Spanish Ministries of Housing, Environment, Labor and Social Affairs and Foreign Affairs are represented in this body, together with universities and professional and social organisations. Wind farms developed by EHN were sited specifically by the judging committee because the company ruled out sites with the highest natural value and applied a range of preventive and corrective environmental impact measures to sites that were selected. The facilities were praised for adding locally generated value to a site, and the company pursued a policy of dialogue with organizations and social groups to gain support for the wind farms through community support. The company’s research and development work in the fields of solar energy, hydrogen energy and biofuel energy were also taken into account by the jury of the international competition.
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