Enel Green Power, a renewable energy subsidiary of Italian energy company Enel, isone of 4 finalists in the “Large Corporation” category of the 2015 Zayed Future Energy Prize. I’d say that it is the least well known of the finalists, but it has definitely earned its spot in the finals.
Enel Green Power constructs and operates wind, solar, geothermal, biomass, and hydro projects in 16 countries in Europe and the Americas. A Bloomberg New Energy Finance analyst evaluating the project ahead of the 2015 Zayed Future Energy Prize awards notes that, as of Q2 2014, it is “the seventh largest owner of renewable assets in the world, and the 9th largest owner of wind assets (5.3GW). The company also operates 2.6GW of hydro, 800MW of geothermal and 300MW of solar PV.”
Much of Enel Green Power’s growth has come in recent years, with the capacity of the company’s renewable energy projects climbing from 1.1 GW to 8.7 GW in the year ending June 2013.
Enel Green Power projects avoided the emissions of over 16 million tonnes of CO2 in 2013 alone.
Enel Green Power isn’t simply riding on the coattails of booming renewable energy markets. It is pioneering new renewable energy solutions. Here are some examples:
• Solar PV to hydrogen storage plant. Power-to-gas technologies are a potential way to cope with the challenges surrounding renewable energy integration. EDG has designed and patented technology that works to use solar PV to generate hydrogen.
• Molten salt/concentrated solar hybrid: Molten salt storage technology can be used to ‘level out’ generation from concentrated solar power (CSP) plants. The project was designed and built by EDG.
• Wind forecasting: EGP designed a system that provides short-term forecasts (6-72 hours) of wind project output, in order to improve plant dispatch and to assist with grid management.
• Geothermal: It has designed and implemented a way to reduce the release of potentially harmful gases, such as hydrogen sulphide, from geothermal cooling towers, thus reducing the local impact of a project.
• Wave energy: EDG has partnered with another company to design and develop a 100kW wave energy prototype.
All in all, Enel Green Power is a giant in the renewable energy world. It doesn’t just focus on one technology, but is leading the way in all of them, and even pioneering some new technology solutions. It’s all impressive work. Congratulations and thanks to Enel Green Power for making the world a greener, healthier, better place.
Image Credit: Enel Green Power
Originally published on Sustainnovate.