Gasunie has successfully issued its first green bond, a loan for €300 million ($325 million) with a maturity of 9.5 years.
The market was extremely interested, resulting in a five-fold oversubscription. The earnings will be used to fund a portion of Gasunie’s ambitious energy transformation initiatives, such as the development of the national hydrogen infrastructure.
Gasunie has revealed that it aims to invest more than €5.5 billion ($5.9 billion) in new infrastructure for the transmission and storage of ‘renewable gases’ such as hydrogen, collected CO2, heat and green gas by the end of 2030.
Grants and Gasunie’s equity will cover a portion of the funding demand. Gasunie aims to issue green bonds on a regular basis in the future years to make up the difference.
The first initiatives from Gasunie’s energy transition strategy have begun to be implemented. The Port of Rotterdam Authority officially begun the construction of the national hydrogen network on 27 October.
Porthos, via which Gasunie and its partners will allow large-scale CO2 transport and storage, has also been approved.
Meanwhile, Gasunie is constructing the WarmtelinQ pipeline, which will transport residual heat from the Port of Rotterdam to homes and companies in and around The Hague and Leiden.
Gasunie’s CFO and Acting CEO, Janneke Hermes, said: “We believe that making green investments also calls for a green method of financing. In recent years, we have made several financing instruments greener by linking them to sustainability goals.
“Now that many of the energy transition projects we are carrying out on our own or with partners are materialising, it’s time for the next step. I am very pleased with the investors who have shown so much interest and who have made this transaction a success. I see this result as a sign of confidence in our financing strategy.”
The proceeds of a green bond may only be spent on ‘green’ things, and the company must keep a record of these transactions in a separate register.
The Green Financing Framework, which Gasunie announced earlier this month, is followed by the Gasunie green bond.
This framework is consistent with the ICMA Green Bond Principles and the European Green Bond Standard, which was accepted by the European Council in October 2023.
This has also been confirmed by ICS, which carried out a second party opinion assessment, Gasunie stated.
ICS also confirmed that the Framework is aligned with the EU Taxonomy’s ‘Substantial Contribution to Climate Change Mitigation’ and ‘Minimum Safeguards’ criteria, and almost completely with the ‘Do No Significant Harm’ criteria.