London — French energy major Total has signed an agreement with Spanish developer Ignis to develop 3.3 GW of solar power projects in the country, involving what it says is the largest corporate power purchase agreement ever signed.
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The latest agreement builds on Total's recent moves to expand into low-carbon energy, with the company aiming to become what it calls "the responsible energy major."
"The first projects in the Ignis portfolio are scheduled to start in 2022, with the ambition of bringing them all into production by 2025," Total said in a statement Sept. 25.
The operation brings to more than 5 GW the company's portfolio of solar projects under development in Spain by 2025 and positions the group as a major player in the country's energy transition, contributing to Spain's ambition to generate 70% of its electricity from renewables by 2030 and 100% by mid-century.
"This solar power portfolio will enable the group to cover all the electricity consumption of its industrial sites in Europe by 2025," it said.
To achieve this goal, the company will purchase almost 6 TWh a year of green electricity generated by its Spanish solar sites through a power purchase agreement covering more than 3 GW of solar farms.
"This will be the largest corporate PPA in the world," Total said.
Through its electricity trading capabilities, Total will be able to supply all its European sites with competitive green electricity, in line with its objective to achieve carbon neutrality.
The company's scope 2 greenhouse emissions -- indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy -- will thus be reduced by almost 2 million mt a year, it said.
"Total is becoming one of the main broad-energy players in the country by intervening both in the production of renewable and gas-based electricity and in the distribution of gas and electricity," said Total chairman and CEO Patrick Pouyanne in the statement.
"Our ambition, first and foremost, is to provide a clean, affordable electricity offering to our residential customers in Spain," he said.
"Spain is a priority country for Total in Europe and we fully intend to leverage the market's growth opportunities that the country offers to respond concretely to the challenges of the energy transition towards carbon neutrality," he said.
The company's solar investment also demonstrates the value of integrating production, trading and sales in the electricity chain, he added.
Total is building a portfolio of low-carbon electricity operations, with a target of 40% of its sales mix by 2050.
"Total's gross low-carbon power generation capacity is close to 9 GW, of which more than 5 GW is from renewable energy sources. In pursuit of its ambition to increase this figure five-fold by 2025, Total intends to continue developing its activities to become one of the leading players in renewable energies worldwide," it said.