The greatest experience
Three decades in renewables treasure a unique know-how
The company Energía Hidroeléctrica de Navarra, S.A. (EHN) was founded in 1989, and 15 years later it was acquired by ACCIONA to constitute the core of its Energy Division. EHN started out building and acquiring a number of hydro plants in the region of Navarra and later diversified its activity towards other technologies, but always in the field of renewable energies.
In December 1994 the first six wind turbines were installed in the El Perdón wind farm located on the mountain range of the same name, 12 kilometres from the city of Pamplona. These six wind turbines, each with a capacity of 500 kilowatts and a hub height of 40 metres, symbolised the company's early beginnings in wind energy. Almost at the same time −in early 1995- the KW Tarifa wind farm (now called ‘El Cabrito’) entered service, the two facilities being the first commercial wind farms in Spain.
Grid connected in 2001, the solar plant near Tudela was the biggest installed at the time in Spain with 1.2 MWp peak capacity. One part of the plant was exploited commercially and the other used for experiments, constituting the start of the company’s activity in the photovoltaic field, a business in which it has now installed more than 1600 MWp, either under its own ownership or for other customers. The biggest plant of this type to date is Puerto Libertad in Mexico, with a capacity of 405 MWp.
In 2002 the company put the biomass plant at Sangüesa into service, the first of its type in southern Europe, and it soon became a benchmark facility in the development of this technology. The plant, with a capacity of 30.2 MW, consumes around 160,000 tonnes of cereal straw a year, which is then converted into clean electricity equivalent to the consumption of around 60,000 households. ACCIONA Energía later built another two biomass plants In Briviesca (Burgos) and Miajadas (Cáceres) based on the experience acquired in the Sangüesa project.
With the idea of controlling the entire value chain in the wind energy sector, the company’s first wind turbine production plant using in-house technology was opened in 2003. Located in Barásoain (Navarra), it started series production of the AW1500 turbine (nominal capacity 1.5 MW). In 2016 ACCIONA Windpower merged with the German manufacturer Nordex to create one of the world leaders in the sector, with ACCIONA as the reference shareholder.
ACCIONA Energía incorporated 2,105 MW of Endesa’s renewable assets (wind and hydro power) under an agreement reached between ACCIONA and the Enel group for the sale of its stake in the Spanish utility to the Italian company. It was ACCIONA Energía’s biggest asset acquisition operation, and a significant boost to its installed capacity to reach 6,455 MW at the end of 2009.
On 7 March 2012 Mexican President Felipe Calderón and ACCIONA President José Manuel Entrecanales inaugurated the wind power complex consisting of the Oaxaca II, III and IV wind farms (total capacity 306 MW). It was the biggest wind power complex installed to date by the company, and the largest in a Latin America at the time. Located on the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, one of the areas with the highest wind energy potential in the world, it can supply 700,000 Mexican households from the power generated by 204 AW1500 turbines of ACCIONA Windpower technology.
The construction of the 94 MWp Sishen plant in South Africa, in the middle of the Kalahari desert, symbolizes ACCIONA Energía's commitment to building large photovoltaic facilities and its capacity to do so in the most difficult geographical environments. A commitment that would materialize from then on in new plants in Chile, Egypt, Ukraine, Spain, USA and Mexico, where the largest plant built to date is located (Puerto Libertad, 405 MWp).
On 20 September 2017, the first battery storage plant for energy produced at a wind farm in Spain was inaugurated in Barásoain (Navarra). ACCIONA Energía thus demonstrates its position at the forefront of innovation in all technological fields capable of providing energy solutions that contribute to combating climate change and decarbonizing the economy. Five years later, the company acquires the largest battery in Texas (190MW) and a portfolio of projects in that state that exceeds 1GW of storage.
ACCIONA Energía installed the first grid-connected floating photovoltaic plant in Spain on the Sierra Brava reservoir (Cáceres) as a demonstration project to test the best solutions for optimizing electricity generation in this kind of installation. The 1.125 MWp plant, which coves only 0.07% of the surface of the reservoir, offers great prospects for the future.
On 1 July 2021 ACCIONA Energía achieved its initial listing in an operation considered the largest on the Spanish stock exchange in recent years. The aim was to drive the company’s ambitious growth plan, which envisages reaching 20 GW in 2025 and over 30 GW by 2030. Less than one year later, and following a successful period, on 20 June 2022 the company joined the Ibex-35, the main reference index of the Spanish stock exchange, giving the company a higher international profile and better access to finance.
On 14 March 2022, in the presence of two Spanish Government ministers and the President of the Balearic Islands, ACCIONA Energía inaugurates the country's first industrial renewable hydrogen plant in Mallorca. Promoted in alliance with Enagás, IDAE and Cemex, Power to Green Hydrogen Mallorca exemplifies the company's commitment to new businesses with great growth potential, such as green hydrogen, offshore wind, electric vehicle recharging, self-consumption and energy services.