CO2 intensity emissions, among the lowest generated by utilities

Iberdrola has been the only European electric utility included in the 20 editions of the prestigious Dow Jones Sustainability Index and is regarded as one of the eight top sustainable electric utilities in the world. One of the factors leading to this recognition was its 28% reduction in direct emissions in the last five years, with a total of 76% since the year 2000.

The following charts show direct CO2 emissions over the past three years.

CO 2 (t) emissions
  2018 2017 2016
Generating 20,329,419 23,027,444 22,812,513
Cogeneration 4,005,405 3,693,748 3,728,577
Total 24,334,824 26,721,192 26,541,089


CO 2 emissions intensity evolution in termal plants
  2018 2017 2016
Specific emissions from thermal power plants (kg/MWh) 377 388 391


Global CO 2 emissions evolution
  2018 2017 2016
Total emissions (Mt CO2 eq) 24.3 26.7 26.6
Specific emissions from global mix (kg/MWh)(1) 163 187 177


In 2018, CO2 emissions per MWh generated were among the lowest at the national and international level. For the purposes of comparison, the specific emissions of European electricity companies are 290 kg CO2/MWh2. The low intensity of Iberdrola's emissions is justified by its production mix, with 58.6% emission-free production in 2018, down 46% from 2007.

Also noteworthy is the decline in the emissions intensity of the Group's power plants from 460 kg CO2/MWh in 2015 and to 377 kg CO2/MWh in 2018.

The main greenhouse gas generated by the Company's activities is CO2, from combustion during thermal power generation. Iberdrola has made a pledge to the public to remain amongst the main European companies with the fewest CO2 emissions per kWh. The Company's strategy is essentially to gradually cut back on its GHG emissions by continuing to generate power from renewable sources, while gradually incorporating the most efficient and least carbon intensive technologies at its existing facilities.

(1) Obtained by dividing emissions by the total net production, including steam production.

(2) Source: European carbon factor Benchmarking of CO2 emissions by Europe's largest electricity utilities (December 2018, PwC).

(*) 100% of Neoenergia has been considered in the years 2016, 2017 and 2018.

(**) The group has a large hydroelectric production capacity. Annual production using this technology depends on rainfall and the capacity of reservoirs during certain periods, which vary greatly. Consequently, the use of other technologies in global production also varies.