Soltec Development SA, a prominent Spanish solar energy promoter, and its subsidiary Luminora Solar Doce are facing a fine exceeding EUR 387,600 (USD 422,750) for breaching a regulation related to multiple applications for power grid access. The penalty was imposed by the Spanish market and competition regulator CNMC.
The CNMC revealed on Tuesday that Luminora Solar Doce, a unit of Soltec, engaged in an abuse of its dominant position as the “single node interlocutor” at the Fausita 400 kV plug-in point in southeastern Spain. This abuse occurred when the regulatory framework still mandated the designation of a single node interlocutor for specific grid access points.
Although the government abolished the concept at the end of 2020, while it was in force, the single node interlocutor was responsible for gathering access applications from all interested parties and submitting them to the grid operator, Red Electrica de Espana (REE). This entity had the authority to coordinate requests to REE, ensuring fair and non-discriminatory access rights to all renewable energy installations.
Luminora's violation involved leveraging its interlocutor role at Fausita 400 kV to favor its own facilities and refusing to include a competitor's application for grid access in the coordinated submissions to REE. Even when REE requested inclusion, Luminora declined, resulting in the competitor filing a dispute with the CNMC's supervisory board. The competitor only gained access to Fausita after the dispute resolution, more than a year after the initial application.
For the breach of Article 2 of the Spanish Competition Act, Luminora Solar Doce has been fined EUR 387,672. Additionally, the parent company, Soltec Development, is held jointly and severally liable for the fine.
This case follows a similar incident in June 2022, where the CNMC imposed a EUR 4.9 million fine on renewables developer Enel Green Power for comparable misconduct.