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Shell Doubles Renewable Investment to $1 Billion

Shell extends clean energy push

Reuters News Service, June 15, 2001

LONDON - Royal Dutch/Shell yesterday said it would renew its renewable energy investment programme with a further $500 million to $1 billion spend earmarked for the next five years. The Anglo-Dutch oil and gas giant's existing five year $500 million spending plan is due to end in autumn 2002.

Though significant for the nascent clean energy sector, the $100 million a year spend is small in relation to Shell's annual capital spending budget, which exceeds $10 billion. In a summary prepared for a presentation to analysts later yesterday, Shell Renewables said the continued investment would focus mainly on solar power, through a joint venture with German engineering group Siemens, and wind power.

Shell Renewables said it had joined the "top tier players in the solar photovoltaics industry" with a 15 percent market share through its Siemens Solar venture, in which it holds a 33 percent share.

"The key objective for the solar business is to grow in line with the market, currently growing at around 25 percent a year, Shell said. In the wind business, Shell is focusing on developing and operating wind farms, and selling so-called "green" electricity.

Shell said it was currently participating in two trial projects totalling eight MegaWatts (MW) of wind generating capacity, and that projects were being evaluated in the UK, Netherlands, Morocco and the USA totalling 400 MW.