Our main businesses
To maximise the competitiveness of its business model, Iberdrola has organised the management of its activities around three global businesses:
Distribution lines in the United States.
The grids area is responsible for building, operating and maintaining electricity lines, substations, transformation centres and other infrastructures to transfer electrical power from the production centres to the end user. The main aims of this project include:
- Zero accidents.
- Offering an excellent service to our costumers, based on supply quality and providing information about the grid.
- Maximising efficiency during the operation of the system through operational excellence and the digitisation of our assets.
- Leading the transformation towards more efficient integration of renewable and distributed energy.
ICONIC GRID BUSINESS PROJECTS
Pioneers in digitisation
10 million smart meters installed in Spain
STAR Project: Main data.
The STAR project (Remote Grid Management and Automation Systems) has deployed 10 million smart meters in Spain (July 2017). With this initiative, the company has already upgraded 93% of all of its meters with subscribed power up to 15 kilowatts. Likewise, Iberdrola has already adapted some 55,000 transformer substations throughout Spain, by incorporating remote management, monitoring and automation capabilities. Data that make Iberdrola one of the most advanced companies in the world in smart grid infrastructures.
This initiative has allowed the improvement in the operation of the grid and the supply quality offered to our customers with different levels of digitisation deployed in our transformer substations and in spontaneous events sent by our smart meters.
The smart energy of Iberdrola: STAR project and big data. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
STAR project: the smart meters of the future. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
STAR is already a global reference of efficiency in smart grid inverters and is contributing to the transformation of the Grid Business, benefitting from the opportunities of new technological developments. It is expected to be completed by 2018, with a global investment of over 2,000 million euros, and is being key to progress in the company's digital strategy in other countries, such as, for example, the SMART UK project in the United Kingdom, after capitalising on the experience gained in Spain.
Smart meters (ScottishPower).
With the gradual implementation of smart grids in Spain, Iberdrola once again underlines its significant catalytic effect on the country's corporate fabric, with the corresponding positive impact on maintaining and creating jobs.
The largest submarine cable laying project in the world
Western Link Project: Main data.
Iberdrola, through its subsidiary ScottishPower, and National Grid, the British grid operator, are building the submarine interconnection system between Scotland, England and Wales with the installation of high-voltage cables: Western Link. The cable has an 850 kilometre length -out of which 770 km are undersea- and it connects the west coast of Scotland with Quay Bay, on the north coast of Wales. This is achieved with a two-directional system: the flow of electricity moves towards the north or south, according to the supply needs and demand for electricity.
The project will require an investment of €1,200 million and make it possible to transmit renewable energy generated in Scotland to homes and businesses in Wales and England, while increasing the interconnection capacity by over 2,200 megawatts (MW), enough to cater for the demand for electricity of over four million homes every year.
Recently, Ignacio Galán, Chairman of Iberdrola, visited the Hunterston station to check the huge progress of the team currently involved in a crucial moment: the initial energisation of the project.
Ignacio Galán visits the Hunterston conversion station. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
The development of the installation can be divided into five sections:
- Construction of a converter station in Hunterston, North Ayrshire, to change from the current DC system to an AC system and use it with the current electricity transmission system.
- Approximately 4 km of high voltage direct current cable to a point, where the subsea cable comes ashore, at Ardneil Bay.
- A subsea marine cable approximately 385 km long from Ardneil Bay to Leasowe on the Wirral península.
- An underground high voltage cable of approximately 33 km through the Wirral península.
- Creation of a converter station in Deeside, Flintshire.
Ship used for submarine cable laying operations.
Western Link was established as a result of the new energy paradigm in the United Kingdom, in which the generation of renewable energies has increased to cater for the growing demand of the country.
IN DETAIL Location in the North Sea: map of the project More information: Western Link Videos of the landfall of the submarine cable in Ardneil Bey, of the Hunterston converter station and of the cable laying operations in Ardneil Bey
GENERATION AND RETAIL BUSINESS
Hydroelectric plant in Aldeadávila, Salamanca.
The generation and retail area focusses on the production of electricity through building, operating and maintaining generation centres, and the purchase and sale of power on wholesale markets. It is likewise responsible for supplying the end user with power and additional services and products. The main aims of this project highlight:
- Competitive supply and excellence in customer service.
- Operational excellence, safety and respect for the environment.
- Identification and minimisation of risk.
- Safety and continuous improvement in the efficiency of operations.
- Analysis of growth opportunities.
ICONIC GENERATION AND RETAIL BUSINESS PROJECTS
One of the largest initiatives undertaken to date in the energy sector in Portugal
Tâmega infraestructure: Main data.
Iberdrola's flagship project involves the construction of three new power plants: Gouvães, Daivões and Alto Tâmega, which will be erected over the Tâmega River, a branch of Duero River in the north of Portugal, close to Oporto. With an investment of over 1,500 million euros, the three power plants will have an installed capacity of 1,158 MW and will be capable of generating over 1,760 GWh per year.
Iberdrola has already reached the first milestone of the works of this hydraulic complex after excavating the first tunnel (with a length of approximately 400 m) used to bypass the Tâmega River, which has led to the construction of the dam and Daivões power plant, currently in execution. The next step involves building the Gouvães power plant.
It is expected that Gouvães will start operating in 2021, Daivões in 2022 and Alto Tâmega in 2023.
This infrastructure is another form of evidence of Iberdrola's permanent commitment to clean energy generation technologies, as well as a very important contribution to the Spanish electricity market.
Tâmega infraestructure: infographics.
Some of the key points, for both Iberdrola and the Portuguese Government, include: job creation, it is estimated that 3,500 direct jobs and 10,000 indirect jobs will be created during the execution of the project, and the economic growth of the areas surrounding Tâmega. The Company is also going to roll out an unprecedented Socioeconomic Action Plan in the area, allocating over €50 million to social, cultural and environmental activities.
Hydroelectric energy: renewable and autochthonous
The company is leader in energy storage, with an installed power of 4,400 MW using pumping technology, the current most efficient storage method, since it generates no atmospheric contaminating emissions and its performance is much higher than that of the best storage banks in the market.
Hydroelectric power plans, such as the Tâmega plant, safeguard the electricity system, since they can store potential energy through filling systems by pumping water from a reservoir to a higher tank. This movement generates a high amount of electricity in very short response times, since downstream water is conveyed to the reservoir to generate electricity. When the plant is pumping, it transfers the water to the lower reservoir and stores it in the top reservoir. In addition, excess energy in periods of low consumption can help cover the market needs at times of higher demand.
The largest installation of these characteristics in Europe is the Cortes-La Muela complex in Valencia.
Retail presence in Portugal
Iberdrola is committed to strengthening its commercial presence in Portugal's residential segment, where it is already a leader in the industrial customer market. Through the Do You Know Iberdrola? campaign, the company presents itself as a world leader in the development of renewable energies and one of the country's biggest investors. In Portugal, Iberdrola currently boasts a portfolio of over 100,000 customers and an extensive network of customer service points in all major cities. It also has a commercial team consisting of more than 500 people.
Continuous innovation in products and services
The company is focussing its efforts on offering unique products and services to its 16 million customers
Continuous innovation: Main products and services.
Iberdrola has already designed different unique products and services as a result of its commitment to digitalisation, personalisation of products to suit the customer and service excellence. These include:
- Planes a Tu Medida: this initiative launched in 2015 was made possible thanks to peak and off-peak usage information provided by the more than 8 million smart meters installed in Spain (November 2016). The main objective is to always provide the most advantageous rate for each electricity bill. Using an online recommendation tool www.planesatumedida.es, any customer in the free market can see which plan best adapts to their needs.
- The Smart Solar Iberdrola and Smart Home programmes are also focused on improving efficiency and energy savings. While Smart Solar intends to promote electricity self-consumption, with the tailored installation of solar panels, comprehensive maintenance and easy payment plans for the same, Smart Home allows the responsible use of heating thanks to its smart thermostat. Using an app, customers cannot only remotely control and programme when it is turned on and off but they can also regulate the temperature.
- In line with the promotion of new consumption formulas, the British subsidiary ScottishPower has created the PowerUp service to allow customers to buy power (gas and electricity) via their mobile, depending on their needs and expectations. The tool provides daily, 1-month, 3-month and 6-month packages and allows you to see power used and what has not been consumed. In this way, the customer has a much better understanding of their power consumption, which makes it possible for them not only to save but also to manage it responsibly.
ScottishPower PowerUp Application.
Iberdrola considers electrification to be the most efficient and sustainable way to decarbonise transport and achieve the objectives of the fight against climate change. As an example of this, it has a Sustainable Mobility Plan, which includes the Green Mobility Plan initiative: a comprehensive solution designed for the company's customer that combines the use of electric vehicles (100% renewable energy supply) with green charging stations. To implement it, the company has drawn up agreements with public administrations, the main vehicle manufacturers and the providers of charging systems.
Iberdrola electric vehicle at a charging station.
RENEWABLE ENERGY BUSINESS
Wikinger offshore wind farm (Germany).
The renewable energy area is responsible for generating and marketing electrical power using renewable sources: wind (onshore and offshore), mini-hydro, solar thermal, photovoltaic, biomass, etc. Nowadays, Iberdrola is a leader in clean energy - it is the top renewable energy producer amongst energy providers in Europe and the US. The main aims of the renewable energy business include:
- Safety during operations.
- Efficiency in operations for maximising the profitability of assets.
- Efficiency in construction costs with special emphasis on offshore wind energy projects.
- Profitable growth in offshore and onshore wind energy in the countries that are strategic for the Group.
ICONIC RENEWABLE BUSINESS PROJECTS
Wikinger offshore wind farm
Symbol of Iberdrola's commitment to innovation, sustainability and internationalisation
Wikinger offshore wind farm: Main project data.
The Wikinger offshore wind farm is an emblematic project for Iberdrola. This project has materialised in a fusion of the company's resolute dedication to renewable energies with technological innovation, internationalisation and a contribution to the economic development with job creation in regions where the group is present. Moreover, through our international expansion, Iberdrola opens the door for its suppliers and service providers to new markets and business.
The construction of this offshore wind farm in the Baltic Sea, where the water is between 37 and 43 metres deep, requires an investment of €1,400 million. The site covers a surface area of about 34 square kilometres (km2), where the company plans to install 70 wind turbines, each with a unit capacity of 5 megawatts (MW).
Construction of the Wikinger offshore wind farm is well under way. Iberdrola is presently mounting wind turbines in the high seas (so far 56 of the 70 in total) after having installed the foundations, cables and substations for this immense offshore complex in which the supplies from Navantia proved to be decisive. This is a particularly complicated operation yet one of the most spectacular stages in a project of such characteristics.
The Wikinger wind farm is expected to be built by the end of September and commercially operational by the end of the year, thus meeting the demanding deadlines to which the company committed despite the extreme climate conditions in the area.
Wikinger offshore wind farm. Video voice transcription (Spanish version) [PDF]
Comparison of the dimensions of a wind turbine with other landmark buildings.
The Andalucía offshore substation, now installed at its final location, will be the power core of the renewable energy facility. This electricity distribution infrastructure, which weighs some 8,500 tonnes, will handle all electricity generated by the wind turbines operating in the open sea.
By the time it is connected to the grid in late 2017, Wikinger's 350 MW capacity will produce enough energy to meet the electricity needs of over 350,000 German households, avoiding the emission of some 600,000 tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere each year.
IN DETAIL This was how the offshore substation travelled from Cadiz to Germany (GPS tracking video) Location on the Baltic Sea: project map Infographic: scale of the offshore wind farm [PDF], Wikinger: data sheet [PDF] Timeline: highlights of the project Videos of the Wikinger offshore wind farm project More information: ScottishPower Renewables
East Anglia ONE
One of the world's largest offshore wind farms
East Anglia ONE: Main project data.
East Anglia One will be one of the largest offshore wind farms in the world when it starts operations in 2020, thanks to an installed capacity of 714 MW which will supply clean energy to more than 500,000 English homes. It is the largest renewable energy project run by a Spanish company ever, with an investment of GBP 2.5 billion, yet another example of Iberdrola's firm commitment to the fight against climate change.
There are no precedents for the magnitude of the project. These are some of the most relevant details:
- East Anglia ONE will have 102 turbines the largest ones to date: 7 MW unit capacity.
- These units will be inside wind turbine towers reaching a total height of 235 metres.
- The farm will be located 85 km from the coast and occupy an area of 300 km2 the equivalent of 30,000 football fields.
- The sub-station will reach a height of 158 metres just 7 metres shorter than The Iberdrola Tower in Bilbao.
East Anglia ONE offshore wind farm (United Kingdom).
This new offshore farm forms part of an even more ambitious project: Iberdrola has applied to the British Government for permission to extend these facilities and has, therefore, submitted a plan to the United Kingdom Authorities for East Anglia TWO (257 km2/800 MW capacity) and THREE (305 km2/1,200 MW capacity).
Likewise, and in response to the company's on-going commitment to wind power research and innovation, ScottishPower, the British subsidiary of Iberdrola, is developing the Frond Mats initiative (vegetation covers) in the waters of the East Anglia ONE offshore wind farm, which uses synthetic underwater vegetation to reduce the effects of currents and is designed to protect wind turbines from the effects of scouring, resulting in huge economic savings.
Front Mats project: innovation in East Anglia ONE.
Video voice transcription (Spanish version [PDF]
The energy model based on clean energies, grids and digitisation has enabled our company to be 30% more efficient than the average for the sector in Europe.