We saw that two out of three of the most profitable electric utilities in the world emphasize solar and wind energy: ENEL of Italy and Iberdrola of Spain, both of which operate in multiple countries, including Iberdrola claiming second most wind power in the U.S. Well, maybe those companies are small, so their profits are a fluke. Nope. We get similar results for profits divided by market cap:
ENEL of Italy is still number 1, with no nuclear and a lot of solar and wind energy. Iberdrola is #4 in profits/market instead of #3 in profits alone. However, Electricité de France (EDF) is #7 instead of #2, and Exelon is #9 instead of #4. Number 2 is Energias de Portugal (EDP), which is heavily into wind power including owning Horizon Wind Energy LLC:
Based in Houston, Texas with 27 wind farms and over 15 offices across the United States, Horizon has developed more than 3,600 megawatts (MW) and operates over 3,400 MW of wind farms. Horizon, ranked third in the United States in terms of net installed capacity, has more than 1,900 turbines in operation and approximately 40 million hours of wind turbine operational history. With over 300 employees, Horizon’s highly qualified team has a proven capacity to execute projects and achieve goals.
Filling out the top four is Entergy, which is not big on renewable energy, and does own and operate nuclear reactors at ten different sites. However, 3 out of the top four (ENEL, EDP, and Iberdrola) are heavily into renewable solar or wind power, and number 1, ENEL, does not use nuclear power. Also, Iberdrola is #2 in wind power in the U.S. and EDP is #3. Why are we letting our wind market be taken over by foreign companies instead of developing it ourselves?
Nuclear operators E.ON, KEPCO, and TEPCO are at the bottom by profits per market share, although TEPCO is by far the worst. They are joined at the bottom by two more. EnBW is a German nuclear operator, which is already dismantling two of its reactors. Tohoku Electric Power operates two nuclear power stations in Japan, where all such stations have been shut down. So all five of the biggest losers by profits per market share lost on nukes.
Southern Company (SO) is #14 in profits/market and #6 in profits alone. That’s not bad, but if SO wants to make some real money for its investers, the Forbes data indicate SO should get into solar and wind power bigtime. And meanwhile SO risks ending up at the bottom of the heap along with those other nuclear operators. It’s our tax money and Georgia Power customer money that SO is wasting on its nuclear boondoggle while SO builds or buys solar plants in New Mexico and Nevada but not Georgia. Look back over here, SO, we need wind offshore and solar inland!