- BloombergNEF counts 31.1 GW clean energy procurement contracts signed in 2021 by corporates, excluding onsite PPAs
- The US led the deal signing with 17 GW, most of which were in the form of VPPAs
- Amazon was the top procurer having signed up for 6.2 GW in 9 countries, increasing its total to 13.9 GW
- AES and Engie were the companies that sold most clean energy capacity to these corporates last year
Globally, corporations invested in 31.1 GW clean energy procurement via the power purchase agreement (PPA) route in 2021, growing almost 24% on annual basis. The PPA segment was led by the US in terms of markets and Amazon among corporates, according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance (BloombergNEF).
In 2020, corporates signed up for 25.1 GW clean energy which analysts previously pegged at 23.7 GW (see 23.7 GW Corporate Clean Energy PPAs Signed In 2020).
Of the 31.1 GW (excluding onsite PPAs), 65% were reported from the Americas alone with 20.3 GW PPAs announced. The US accounted for 17 GW of this total and interestingly it was the virtual PPAs (VPPA) that represented 12 GW worth of deals. Regulated utilities signed up for 3.2 GW.
Among markets, Europe recorded 8.7 GW of deals, led by Spain and the Nordics. Asia followed next with 2 GW.
Out of more than 137 corporations that entered these transactions, Amazon led the pack for the 2nd consecutive year with 6.2 GW as 44 offsite PPAs in 9 nations. In all, its total clean energy PPA capacity rose to 13.9 GW globally (see 18 New Utility Scale RE Projects For Amazon).
Microsoft followed next with 8.9 GW, and Meta (previously Facebook) with 8 GW. “Previously, Google held the corporate clean energy crown, but has turned its attention more to sourcing 24/7 carbon-free power through methods outside of PPAs,” pointed out the analysts. Overall, technology companies were seen to be establishing themselves as largest corporate clean energy buyers.
According to BloombergNEF analysts, AES was the biggest clean energy seller to corporates, having secured contracts of about 3 GW capacity. Engie signed 2.1 GW, Orsted 1.3 GW, Vattenfall 0.8 GW and NextEra 0.7 GW. For AES and Engie, the analysts opine, “One of the secrets of success for both companies is that they have the backing of a large utility to support their development arms.”
“More corporations are making new sustainability commitments, costs for renewables are plummeting and regulators around the world are slowly coming around to the fact that clean energy might be a silver bullet in the decarbonization of the private sector,” said BloombergNEF’s Head of Sustainability Research, Kyle Harrison.
A total of 355 RE100 members in 25 countries have collectively already signed up for 47 GW through PPAs. Going forward, the analysts estimate them to need an additional 246 TWh of clean electricity in 2030 to meet their target of 100% renewable energy sourcing for their operations.
BloombergNEF counts, “This is lower than its previous forecast – largely due to the activity from incumbent RE100 members, who purchased a record 21 TWh of clean electricity through PPAs in the second half of 2021 alone. Should this shortfall be met with offsite PPAs, it would catalyze an additional 94 GW of new solar and wind build globally.”