Sustainable Energy

Climate talks a great, great success: Iberdrola

Anmar Frangoul | Special to
Bru Garcia | AFP | Getty Images

The make-or-break United Nations climate control talks in Paris has been a great success in galvanizing global action, the chief executive of Spanish utility Iberdrola told CNBC.

At the end of last year, global leaders gathered in Paris to discuss how to rein in climate change. On December 13, they finally agreed to make sure global warming stayed "well below" 2 degrees Celsius and to "pursue efforts" to limit the temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Speaking to CNBC on Wednesday, Iberdrola's CEO Ignacio Galán hailed the landmark COP21 agreement: "I think the fact that 195 nations… (have) already signed and agreed (that)… the problem exists, and they have to do something to stop these emissions, that is a great, great, great success in my opinion."

Galan added that his company was investing "heavily in renewables" and that it was "the world leaders in wind."

Galán also stated that investment in "more intelligent, more smart grids" was also needed.

Europe's biggest power company by market value posted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation of 7.3 billion euros ($8 billion), almost 5 percent above a year earlier but slightly missing analysts' forecasts in a Reuters poll.

The company added that it would target investment in the United States and Britain as part of a new strategic plan, at the same time as its rivals in the energy business limit their expansion objectives.

The company also said it aimed to invest 24 billion euros ($26 billion) between 2016 and 2020, mostly in networks and renewable energies.

The Bilbao-based company, which completed a $3 billion takeover of U.S.-based UIL Holding last year, already owns fellow U.S. company Energy East and British utility ScottishPower. It is also growing its business in Brazil and Mexico.

--Reuters contributed to this report