World’s largest IPP to reveal solar-powered strategy for fossil fuel separation

Engie's energy transition will be largely a solar powered one. Source: ©SolaireDirect

French firm Engie, formerly GDF Suez, the largest independent power producer in the world, will announce a strategy for its transition away from fossil fuels in the coming weeks.

The company, which has 115GW of electricity generation assets, has already increased its presence in the renewables sector, not least with the acquisition of French PV developer, SolaireDirect. It has also begun the process of backing away from conventional fuels.

Speaking to PV Tech on the sidelines of the Solar Investment and Finance Conference in London on Wednesday, SolaireDirect CEO Thierry Lepercq said the plans for the shift would be revealed by the end of the month.

“Moving a 150-year-old group to something totally different is going to take some time but there will be more announcements in late February with a number of details about the group’s strategy, which will be renewable and solar driven. Even though, to be very frank, solar makes up just 1GW [of Engie's capacity] but the ambition is extremely big,” he said.

A number of European utilities including RWE and E.On have begun a focus away from fossil fuel generation assets. The move by Engie has already been signposted by a series of strategy shifts made by the company.

“The announcements have already been made. One is that the group wants to be a leader in the energy transition. That’s an abstract thing but energy transition clearly means fossil fuels to renewables. The second announcement was that the group ceased investment in coal. That sends a strong message. It has also moved out of merchant gas in the US, which is a significant capacity.

“Then there is the question of which renewable energy, you look at what is competitive, it’s about serving consumers with competitive energy, and right now solar is unbeatable,” said Lepercq.

The shift is also giving the group a new route into new markets.

It recently won a 140MW solar project in India and announced it was disposing of its coal assets in the country.

“The group’s strategy in India, a key market that the group is not well present in, will be solar-based and that will go for other Asian and Latin American markets as well,” added Lepercq.

Read Next

PV Tech Premium
November 25, 2022
PV Tech Premium caught up with Gyanesh Chaudhary, vice-chairman and managing director at Indian PV module manufacturer Vikram Solar, which has a 2.5GW annual production capacity, to discuss the thinking behind the ALMM and PLI schemes and whether ingot and wafer production is realistic in India.
November 24, 2022
The North American subsidiary of utility Enel has launched a clean energy retail initiative in selected US states, beginning with Texas, to allow its commercial and industrial (C&I) customers to purchase renewable energy directly without entering into a power purchase agreement (PPA).
November 21, 2022
The Public Service Company of Oklahoma (PSO), a subsidiary of utility American Electric Power (AEP), has petitioned the state corporate commission for approval to purchase a 995.5MW solar PV and wind portfolio.
PV Tech Premium
November 14, 2022
An energy consultant updates PV Tech Premium on how the south Indian state, driven by supportive policy changes, is now swiftly installing rooftop solar and EV infrastructure while concentrating on large-scale floating solar to side-step land scarcity.
November 14, 2022
A wholly owned subsidiary of Singapore-based energy company Sembcorp Industries has secured a deal to acquire Indian independent power producer Vector Green Energy.
November 11, 2022
Seven key Asian countries collectively saved approximately US$34 billion in fossil fuel costs in the first half of 2022 through solar generation, according to research from Ember, the Centre for Research on Energy and Clean Air (CREA) and the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA).

Subscribe to Newsletter

Upcoming Events

Solar Media Events
November 29, 2022
Malaga, Spain
Solar Media Events
February 22, 2023
Leonardo Royal Hotel London Tower Bridge
Solar Media Events
March 14, 2023
Berlin, Germany
Solar Media Events
March 21, 2023
Lisbon, Portugal
Solar Media Events
June 6, 2023
Napa, USA