SUSTAINABILITY

ENVIRONMENTAL TOPICS
ENVIRONMENTAL TOPICS

Note: EDPR reports EBITDA windfarms environmental indicators the year after the COD (Commercial Operating Date), when the trial periods is over and the indicators are already significant. So that, the windfarms that have entered into operation in 2017 will be included in the environmental indicators of 2018.

GRI 302-1 – ENERGY CONSUMPTION WITHIN THE ORGANIZATION

Wind turbines and solar panels require a small amount of electricity to operate. This energy consumption is generally self-consumed. Given the intermittency of wind generation, sometimes it is needed to consume electricity from the grid.

GRI 302-4 – REDUCTION OF ENERGY CONSUMPTION

EDPR’ activity is based on clean energy generation, and it produces about 398 times the electricity consumed by itself. Nonetheless, the company is conscious about promoting a culture of rational use of resources and promotes many internal campaigns to encourage sustainable behaviors as is explained in its website www.edpr.com

GRI 303-1 – WATER WITHDRAWAL BY SOURCE

Generation from wind energy does not consume water in its operational processes. The water is consumed mainly for human use. The consumption of water per electricity generated accounts for 0.51 liters/MWh. Even so, the company actively seeks to adopt more eco-efficient practices. An example of this, in 2017, 38 substations had rainwater collection and treatment systems installed to cover their own water supply needs.

WATER CONSUMPTION PER TECHNOLOGY

GRI 304-1 – OPERATIONAL SITES OWNED, LEASED, MANAGED IN, OR ADJACENT TO, PROTECTED AREAS AND AREAS OF HIGH BIODIVERSITY VALUE OUTSIDE PROTECTED AREAS

GRI 304-2 – SIGNIFICANT IMPACTS OF ACTIVITIES, PRODUCTS AND SERVICES ON BIODIVERSITY

Potential environmental impacts are analyzed in detail in the environmental impact studies of the projects. Additionally, feasible alternatives are assessed and preventive, corrective and compensation measures are determined.

The company has defined general procedures in its Environmental Management System to prevent, correct or compensate impacts in the environment. In addition, efforts are intensified with specific monitoring procedures in the small number of sites located inside or close to protected areas.

Potential environmental impacts are analyzed in detail in the environmental impact studies of the projects.

GRI EU13 – BIODIVERSITY OF OFFSET HABITATS COMPARED TO THE BIODIVERSITY OF THE AFFECTED AREAS

In the small number of sites located inside or close to protected areas, EDPR intensifies the efforts with specific monitoring procedures, as defined in the Environmental Management System.

GRI 304-3 – HABITATS PROTECTED OR RESTORED

After the construction period, it is EDPR duty to return the site to its initial state. Therefore, the company performs morphological restoration and reseeding works. In 2017, almost 6 hectares of affected land were restored.

Furthermore, EDPR collaborates with Fundación Patrimonio Natural and Migres to promote, maintain and manage the natural heritage.

Fundación Patrimonio Natural is linked to the Castilla y León Regional Government. In 2017, an economic contribution of € 25,000 was made to work in collaboration with the Fundación Patrimonio Natural in the following actions:

– Repositioning of a transmitter acquired in 2016 in an adult real kite individual and reception of data from the transmitters in operation placed since the beginning of the radiolabelling program.

– Follow-up actions of the breeding population of the royal kite in the regions of Pinares (Valladolid), Tierra del Vino and Guareña (Zamora) and analysis of the movements of the radio-marked individuals.

Fundación Migres is linked to the Andalucía Regional Government. In 2017, an economic contribution of €10,000 was made to work in collaboration with the Fundación Migres in the following actions:

1. Coordination and follow-up of the environmental surveillance plan carried out in the wind farms

Through the execution of this measure:

  • The surveillance protocol is coordinated in all wind farms in the Tahivilla area
  • The spatiotemporal monitoring of the accident occurrence is carried out
  • The correct execution of the surveillance is supervised
  • The establishment of the period to the reinforcement of the surveillance
  • The continuous training of the people responsible for the environmental monitoring.

In addition, in 2017, a quality protocol for environmental monitoring has been designed, where several measures were established for quality control, as well as indicators for monitoring which contribute in obtaining the best results. This protocol must ensure a quality that allows a maximum reduction in accident rate.

2. Proposal for environmental measures for the conservation of threatened raptures in the environment around the wind farms of la Janda

This measure has not been executed yet. It will be carried out in 2018 with what has already been paid in 2017. It has not been started because there are some measures that have not yet been approved by the Environment.

3. Scientific monitoring of migration in the strait of Gibraltar

With this monitoring, we can know the fluctuations that occur in the number of specimens of the different migratory species, as well as detect possible conservation problems of these species and their habitats. This is especially important in a scenario of global change. Through the development of a specific program for monitoring the migration of gliding, marine and passerine birds in the Strait of Gibraltar, the aim is to detect:

  • Changes in migratory populations that may be related to the trends of these species globally, as indicators of their conservation status.
  • Changes in the migratory patterns of the species.
  • Reveal the biological meaning of these changes in relation to the current scenario of global change.

GRI 305-1 – DIRECT (SCOPE 1) GHG EMISSIONS

EDPR’s Scope 1 emissions represent 1,604 tons of CO2 equivalent. 1,020 tones are emitted by transportation related to the windfarms operation, 177 tones by gas consumption in the company’s offices and the rest of it is related to SF6.

Part of the equipment used for electricity generation purposes contains SF6 gasses and during 2017, EDPR registered emissions of 17 kg of this gas, which is equivalent almost to 407t CO2.

Note: Emissions were estimated according to GHG Protocol (including official sources such as IPCC or the U.S Department of Energy)

GRI 305-2 – ENERGY INDIRECT (SCOPE 2) GREENHOUSE GAS (GHG) EMISSIONS

EDPR’s CO2 indirect emissions represent 8,005 tons, 7,821 tons driven by electricity consumption by the wind farms and solar plants and 184 tons electricity consumption by the offices.

In 2017, 100% of the emissions related to electricity consumption in windfarms and our own offices in Spain and US have been compensated by Certifications of Origin in Spain and Renewable Energy Certifications (RECs) in US, obtained from the renewable energy generation.

Note 1: The emission factors used are based on the following sources: Portugal – EDP, Turbogás, Tejo Energia, Rede Eléctrica Nacional (REN), and Entidade Reguladora dos Serviços Energéticos (ERSE); Spain – Red Eléctrica de España (REE); Brazil – Ministry of Science and Technology – SIN (National Interconnected System); Other European Countries; and Canada – IHS CERA.

Note 2: Electricity consumption emissions were calculated with the global emission factors of each country.

GRI 305-3 – OTHER INDIRECT (SCOPE 3) GREENHOUSE GAS (GHG) EMISSIONS

EDPR’s work requires employees to travel and commute. Based on the estimates, the transportation used by employees accounted for a total of 6,124 tons of CO2 emissions.

Note: Emissions were estimated according to GHG Protocol, by following the DEFRA standard. Employee commuting emissions were calculated from data collected in a survey to all employees.

GRI 305-5 – REDUCTION OF GREENHOUSE GAS (GHG) EMISSIONS

Even though EDPR activity inherently implies the reduction GHG emissions, the company goes one-step forward by compensating 100% of the emissions related to grid connection of the windfarms and offices in Spain and US.

EDPR core business activity inherently implies the reduction GHG emissions. Wind and solar energy has zero carbon emissions, contributing to the world’s fight against climate change and does not produce harmful SOx, NOx, or mercury emissions, protecting valuable air and water resources. In 2017, it was estimated that the company’s activities avoided the emission of 22,051 thousand tons of CO2.

The company’s emissions represent 0.1% of the total amount of emissions avoided and 50% of the total emissions are from the necessary electricity consumption by the wind farms. Even though EDPR’s activity is based on the clean energy generation, it is conscious about promoting a culture of rational use of resources. During 2017, EDPR continued promoting initiatives that foster environmental best practices in its offices.

In 2017, 100% of the emissions related to electricity consumption in windfarms and our own offices in Spain and US have been compensated by Certifications of Origin in Spain and Renewable Energy Certifications (RECs) in US, obtained from the renewable energy generation.

Note 1: To calculate the emissions avoidance, the energy generation has been multiplied by the CO2 eq emission factors of each country and state within the US. EDPR considers the emission factor of just fossil fuel energy, as it is considered that by increasing the generation of renewable energy, there is a displacing of these technologies, while other renewable technologies and nuclear plants will continue with its quota of generation.
Note 2: In order to calculate avoided emissions, generation in Mexico is included as well as the country is included at operational data.
Note 3: The emission factors used are based on the following sources: Portugal – EDP, Turbogás, Tejo Energia, Rede Eléctrica Nacional (REN), and Entidade Reguladora dos Serviços Energéticos (ERSE); Spain – Red Eléctrica de España (REE); Brazil – Ministry of Science and Technology – SIN (National Interconnected System); USA – Emissions & Generation Resource Integrated Database (eGRID) for each state emission factor; Other European Countries, Mexico and Canada – IHS CERA.

GRI 306-2 – WASTE BY TYPE AND DISPOSAL METHOD

The main contribution to the hazardous waste produced by wind farms is related to oil and oil-related wastes such as oil filters or oil containers, used mainly for lubrication of the turbines. The consumption of this oil is based on certain pre-defined replacement time frequencies (between 2 and 5 years, based on the component, oil type and manufacturer).

During 2017, the recovery rate was 88% impacted mainly by a significant spill with a volume of 80 metric tons of soil contaminated brought to disposal. The increase in hazardous wastes is mainly due to the contamination of the soil. This soil was removed and fully restored. Excluding this fact and other accidents such as blades breakage that generate fiberglass, the recovery rate would have been 98%, what certifies that the company has been actively working to improve the recycling rate of its hazardous wastes, through authorized waste haulers. The increase shown in non-hazardous wastes is driven by glass fiber and metals from blades. These metals where fully recovered.

Annual fluctuations in hazardous waste generated are heavily dependent on the pluri-annual oil replacement programs above mentioned. Non-hazardous wastes generated by the company include metals, plastics, paper or domestic garbage which is recycled in their vast majority.

The following table summarizes the amount wastes generated per GWh in EDPR’s facilities and the rate of recycling. The following table summarizes the amount wastes generated:

Note: For the purposes of this report, all wastes have been classified as Hazardous or Non-hazardous according to European Waste Catalogue; However, in each country where EDPR has a geographic presence, each wind farm is required to adhere to national law by following company procedures for handling, labelling, and storage of wastes to ensure compliance. In cases, like in the United States, when the company’s operations generate small quantities of substances which fall into additionally-regulated categories such as used oils and universal wastes, EDPR follows strict standards for handling and disposal of these waste types to ensure and remain compliant with all applicable laws.
Note 2: 2016 ratios per GWh has been restated.

GRI 306-3 – SIGNIFICANT SPILLS

Given EDPR’s activity and its locations, oil spills and fires are the major environmental risks the company faces. The Environmental Management System is designed and implemented to prevent emergency situations from happening. But, just to be cautionary, the system covers the identification and management of these, including the near-miss situations.

EDPR defines as significant spill the ones above 0.16 m3 that reached the ground. Additionally, EDPR registers near miss situations, when registered incident does not reach the category of significant spill. In 2017, the company had 3 significant spills with a total volume of 0.64 m3 of oil spilled, 1 incipient fire, 3 fires without environmental impact and 1 fire with minimal impacts (0.5 acre) on the neighboring forest. All cases were properly managed: oil spills were confined early and contaminated soil was collected and managed. Additionally, 65 near miss were registered driven by small oil leaks that did not reach bare soil.

EDPR performs regular environmental drills to guarantee that all employees are familiar with the risks and have received the appropriate training to prevent and act, if necessary.

GRI 307-1 – NON-COMPLIANCE WITH ENVIRONMENTAL LAWS AND REGULATIONS

During 2017, the company did not receive any penalty for non-compliance with environmental laws and regulations.

GRI 308-1 – NEW SUPPLIERS THAT WERE SCREENED USING ENVIRONMENTAL CRITERIA

EDPR ́s Environment and Biodiversity Policies reflect a responsible management of the environment along the whole value chain. According to these policies, EDPR is committed to ensure that everyone involved, including suppliers, has the necessary, adequate skills for the purpose.

The suppliers of EDPR shall adopt all necessary measures to ensure strict compliance with all applicable environmental regulations as well as EDPR ́s Environment and Biodiversity Policies, internal norms, procedures and systems in place as regards to environmental management.

EDPR has implemented, for all its wind farms in operation, an Environmental Management System (EMS) developed according to the international standard ISO 14001. EDPR ́s suppliers shall know and understand the EMS and ensure the full compliance with the procedures set. Supplier shall make the EMS available to its employees and subcontractors.

In 2017, 83% of EDPR’s critical suppliers (defined as per EDP formal corporate standard methodology) in Corporate, Europe and Brazil and in North America had environmental systems.

GRI 308-2 – NEGATIVE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS IN THE SUPPLY CHAIN AND ACTIONS TAKEN

In 2015, EDPR carried out a study to characterize its Supply Chain, including the analysis of the exposure to economic, social and environmental risks. This analysis was performed using ESCHER (Efficient Supply Chain Economic and Environmental Reporting) methodology developed by PwC. For the ESCHER calculation routine PwC used EDP Group 2014 data.

The study allowed EDPR to determine the following results: 300* thousand-ton GHG emissions associated to EDPR’s direct and indirect Supply Chain, 5%* of which related to direct suppliers.

Through this study, EDPR aims to identify areas where should focus its improvement activities in order to significantly reduce its exposure to risk and optimize impacts.

Note: Analysis performed by PwC using ESCHER (Efficient Supply Chain Economic and Environmental Reporting) tool, based on 2014 purchasing data. This study is still representative of EDPR reality and companies in the sector perform these studies every 2/3 years. Data presented in this chapter resulting from this study is marked with an *.

 

For additional information related to Environmental topics please refer to the Positive Balance on the environment Section and Suppliers Section.