Iberdrola cutting down its U.S. business
By Christina Williams
Sustainable Business Oregon editor
Iberdrola Renewables is taking a hard look at its U.S. operations.
Iberdrola Renewables is trimming development projects from its pipeline and may be looking to sell some of its wind farms as its parent company reevaluates its U.S. business.
Based in Portland, Iberdrola Renewables scrapped plans for two South Dakota wind farms, a planned total of 500 megawatts, citing economic conditions including depressed energy costs.
According to SNL Financial, the South Dakota pullback follows news from May that Iberdrola would cancel plans to build a wind energy project in Pennsylvania.
Meanwhile, energy publication Recharge, reported Friday that Iberdrola was putting up for sale 707 megawatts in operating wind farms along with a project of 1.4 gigawatts more. Iberdrola is the second largest wind energy operator in the U.S. with 1,299.6 megawatts of wind on the ground just in the Pacific Northwest.
Recharge indicated that Iberdrola Renewable's parent company, the Spanish utility Iberdrola SA, was looking for strategic alternatives for its U.S. business.
In an email Friday, Jan Johnson, Iberdrola Renewables spokeswoman, said, "We are right-sizing our pipeline across the country. It's part of what we have discussed earlier — regulatory uncertainty and low energy prices."
Johnson added, "But we take the long view and continue to develop in selected markets."
In February, Iberdrola was awarded a $1.1 million grant from the Portland Development Commission for upgrades to its headquarters in Northwest Portland. Iberdrola, which at the time reported 350 employees in Portland, in turn agreed to keep its U.S. headquarters in Portland for the next 10 years.
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