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Riopele, a leading company in the European textile sector, is set to bolster its investment in renewable energy through a partnership with EDP. A new 4.5MWp photovoltaic plant is being set up, which will supply approximately 20% of the current grid consumption, ensuring greater energy independence and a more sustainable energy consumption.
This allows Riopele to take another step in its decarbonisation strategy, investing in the installation of solar panels in various areas of its main complex in Vila Nova de Famalicão.
By installing more than 7,000 solar panels, Riopele will have a total renewable energy production of 5.7 GWh per year, a significant step towards increasing the use of clean energy in its production processes and reducing dependence on the energy grid.
This is yet another investment in this area that has already allowed renewable and sustainable energy sources to increase from 27% to 60% of Riopele's total energy consumption within one year.
With an installed capacity of 4.5 MWp, the new investment, monitoring, and maintenance of this solar plant will be handled by EDP Comercial, which was chosen by Riopele for a 15-year partnership. In addition to installing solar panels on the roof, EDP Comercial is also installing photovoltaic modules on the building's facade and in the parking lot's roof, maximising solar use in that location and the benefits for Riopele. Overall, it is estimated that this project will prevent the emission of more than a thousand tons of CO2 per year.
‘This partnership with EDP and the generation of photovoltaic self-consumption energy are yet another step in Riopele's strategy. This allows us to accelerate our decarbonisation pace, contributing to environmental sustainability. At the same time, we reduce our dependence on external factors and the resulting fluctuations in one of our main operating costs, bringing predictability and stability to the business,’ emphasised José Alexandre Oliveira, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Riopele.
EDP serving businesses
Supporting businesses in their energy transition will be the main growth focus for EDP Comercial in the coming years. EDP Comercial has specialised in the installation, maintenance, and operation of solar power plants for decentralised energy production, customised for each company and requiring no initial investment from the customer. This will be one of the EDP Group's major investments, with plans to invest €2.5 billion globally by 2026 to install an additional 4 GWp in solar projects for households and businesses, making a significant contribution to the energy transition.
Currently, over 1.6 GWp of solar capacity is installed for customers in 17 countries, with Portugal making a significant contribution to this figure. In Northern Portugal, where Riopele is located, more than two thousand companies, ranging from SMEs to large industries, have already installed or are in the process of installing solar solutions on their buildings. This accelerates the decarbonisation of their processes and contributes to the country's climate targets.
Carbon neutrality by 2027
Founded in 1927, Riopele is one of the oldest Portuguese textile companies and an international reference in the creation and production of fabrics for fashion and clothing collections. With over 1,000 employees, the company exports about 95% of its production.
The company incorporates sustainable practices at all levels of the business, focusing on producing high-quality fabrics developed from natural, synthetic, artificial, and recycled fibers.
In 2022, Riopele announced its ambitious commitment to become operationally carbon-neutral by 2027. This commitment involves implementing a set of measures and projects aimed at ensuring that all of the company's operations have zero environmental impact.