GDF Suez

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GDF Suez S.A. is a French multinational electric utility company, headquartered in Paris and 36.7 owned by the French government. In the UK it has interests in the nuclear industry and the nascent unconventional gas field.

Background

In July 2008 the energy division of Suez merged with French state energy company Gaz de France, creating GDF Suez. In one fell swoop the merger created 'the world's fourth largest energy utility by market capitalization, behind Russia's Gazprom, France's EDF and Germany's E.ON. The combined revenues of Suez and Gaz de France were about $117 billion, with earnings of almost $8.85 billion'.[1]Suez Environment, the water and waste division is 35 per cent part owned by GDF Suez, as such there is quite an overlap on the board of Suez Environment from that of GDF Suez.[2] Elyo Suez is a subsidiary company.

Nuclear interests

GDF Suez is a partner in the UK nuclear energy consortium NuGen, which is developing plans to build a new nuclear power station in West Cumbria near Sellafield.

UK lobbying

GDF Suez appears to be a heavyweight player in the UK, with periodic meetings with ministers to discuss key policies such as electricity market reform (EMR) and what the Government describes generically in its not so transparent 'transparency disclosures' as 'energy and climate change issues.

Ministerial meetings

In November 2010 GDF Suez met with Chris Huhne, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, to discuss electricity market reform, along with Independent Generators' Group, International Power, DONG UK, Eggborough Power Ltd, Draw Power Ltd, Intergen, and ConocoPhillips.

In May 2011 GDF Suez met with Justine Greening Economic Secretary to the Treasury and James Sassoon, Commercial Secretary to the Treasury, to discuss energy issues. A month later in June 2011, the company met with Charles Hendry, Minister of State in the Department of Energy and Climate Change for a discussion on energy policy. [3]

In May 2013 GDF was one of 18 energy firms and organisations at an 'Energy Leaders Forum' dinner attended by Energy Secretary Ed Davey 'to discuss energy and climate change issues'. Other attendees included Drax Power, Scottish Power, E.ON, Good Energy, Energy UK, ESB, Phillips 66 Trading Ltd, RWE nPower, Eggborough Power, SSE, Intergen, EdF, Centrica, National Grid, RES, Smartest Energy, First Utility. [4]

In June 2013 GDF also met with Ed Davey as part of the Independent Generators Group (ESB, Drax, Phillips 66, Eggborough Power, GDF-Suez, Intergen and DONG), 'to discuss energy and climate change issues' according to DECC's ministerial disclosures. [4]

Lobbying firms

Joins the fracking rush

FrackWell.png This article is part of the Spinwatch Fracking Portal and project
In October 2013 GDF Suez formed a joint venture with Dart Energy to drill up to 14 wells in Lancashire and Wales in the UK exploring for both coal bed methane (CBM) — gas strapped in underground coal seams — and for shale gas. The company was accused of hypocrisy given that fracking is banned in France. [13] SLR Consulting carried out the environmental advisory and due diligence work for this deal. [14]

GDF is also listed as a funder of the Task Force on Shale Gas (UK) - an 'independent' but industry-funded group set up in October 2014, whose secretariat is lobbying and PR firm Edelman.

Affiliations

Resources

See: Fracking lobbying firms

Notes

  1. Chris Eales, Alan Kovski, 'New French energy giant GDF Suez officially launched following merger of GDF and Suez', Global Power Report (July 24 2008)
  2. Give ref and note which people overlap?
  3. GDF Suez , Who's Lobbying, undated, acc 21 June 2012
  4. 4.0 4.1 DECC, QUARTERLY INFORMATION 1 Apr – 30 Jun 2013 Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Rt Hon Edward Davey MP
  5. APPC Register Entry for 1 Sep 2012 to 30 Nov 2012, APPC Register Entry for 1 Jun 2012 to 31 Aug 2012
  6. APPC Current Register 1st June 2013 - 31st August 2013, acc 12 November 2013
  7. PRCA Public Affairs Register: Consultancies – March to May 2013
  8. APPC Register Entry for 1 Sep 2012 to 30 Nov 2012
  9. APPC Register for 1st March 2013 - 31st May 2013
  10. UKPAC Register Period 1 November 2013 - 28 February 2014
  11. APPC Register Register for 1st June 2014 - 31st August 2014
  12. APPC Register for 1st December 2014 - 28th February 2015
  13. Tim Webb and Ben Webster, French energy group joins the UK rush to get fracking, The Times, Last updated at 12:01AM, October 23 2013, acc 24 October 2013
  14. SLR supports UK shale gas and coal bed methane farm-in, Oil Voice, 29 November 2013