EIB Approves €4.3bn Renewable Energy Package
The European Investment Bank (EIB) has approved a €4.3 billion financing package targeting renewable energy and energy efficiency projects across Western Europe and as far afield as India.
It is part of a €12.4 billion fund that will cover a wide range of sustainability sectors, as well as broadband internet connection, in a total of 63 projects.
“The EU Bank is supporting new investment in sustainable transport, renewable energy and helping small companies harness business opportunities. The impressive range of new projects approved by the European Investment bank today will improve business opportunities, ensure better access to clean water, green energy, internet and mobile banking, health and education, and upgrade transport for millions of people across Europe and around the world,” said Werner Hoyer, President of the EIB.
The loans package for renewable energy will support onshore wind, hydropower and smart meter projects in Italy, energy efficiency, solar, wind and district heating projects in France, as well as reinforcement and extension of natural gas distribution in Ireland and Spain, according to the EIB. The bank explained that natural gas was included as it is viewed as a stepping stone to lower-carbon energy supplies.
An undisclosed sum has been earmarked for renewable energy projects in India, with another €500 million loan pledged for a new metro line in Bangalore. The Paris Metro will receive a €1.5 billion loan to build the new line 15. Other urban rail projects in Liege, Hannover, Bremen and Tunis will also be supported as the EIB seeks to help reduce the carbon footprint of the transportation sector.
France will also benefit to the tune of €300 million to ‘de-risk’ new energy technologies and another €120 million loan for Engie France Networks, which recently completed a geothermal district heating system. The French residential energy efficiency agency will receive €43 million of financing.
Italy’s Alperia Hydropwer will get €80 million of funding as it seeks to diversify into wind and solar, with Spain receiving €125 million to extend its natural gas network. A further €20 million has been promised for an energy efficiency scheme in Spain and Portugal.
As well as the energy package, the EIB gave the green light to a total of more than €1 billion of financing for water infrastructure projects in Portugal, Italy, Spain, Egypt and Morocco.