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Press release BoxID: 262450 (RWE AG)
  • RWE AG
  • Opernplatz 1
  • 45128 Essen
  • http://www.rwe.com
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  • Volker Heck
  • +49 (201) 12 15120

Essent and RWE sign Sustainability Agreement

(PresseBox) (Arnhem / Essen, ) Essent and RWE have entered into a binding agreement for investments into sustainable power generation in the Netherlands. Binding agreements have been made in the Sustainability Agreement with regard to:

- Affordable and sustainable power production
- Investment focus on the generation of sustainable energy and a reduction of CO2 emissions
- Investment in innovation
- Excellent service to customers at competitive prices .

This agreement and the related Development Plan serve to reconfirm RWE's intended investments in the Netherlands. From 2009 to 2013, several billion euros will be invested in the following areas, amongst others:

- Offshore and onshore wind power: 2,000-2,500 MW
- Power plants:
- Biomass/coal-fired power station in Eemshaven, carbon capture and storage ready (more than €2 billion)
- Modernisation of existing power plants
- New state-of-the-art gas-fired power plants (Moerdijk and Maasbracht)
- Ensuring security of supply of gas through, for example, the expansion of capacity for gas storage
- Optimisation of customer service Investment (including research) in the utilisation of sustainable technologies such as heat pumps, decentralised power generation and micro combined heat and power plants.

Thanks to RWE's support, Essent is able to make much larger investments in sustainable energy in the Netherlands than before. Essent's sustainable strategy can thus be implemented: to increase power production from low carbon fuel sources to 25% in 2020, to increase the energy efficiency rate of power stations from 42.5% to 50% before 2020, to achieve better than average performance regarding the emissions of SO2 and NOX, and to develop a zero emissions power plant through the capture and storage of CO2.

The independent Essent Sustainability Development Foundation has been set up to monitor and supervise compliance with the Development Plan. This Foundation has three bodies: a Foundation Board, the Sustainability Development Council and the Vendors' Board.

The Foundation Board has two main responsibilities. It appoints and can remove members from the Sustainability Development Council and enforces compliance with the Development Plan, in accordance with the Sustainability Agreement. It consists of representatives of the selling shareholders.

The Sustainability Development Council has seven members. Three members are appointed by the selling shareholders and three members are appointed by RWE and Essent. These six members then appoint an independent chairman who has broad experience in the field of energy and an understanding of the public interest. The Sustainability Development Council meets at least twice a year.

The most important tasks of the Sustainability Development Council are:

- Supervising RWE and Essent's compliance with the Sustainability Agreement, including the Development Plan
- Evaluating the progress of the Development Plan's implementation
- Giving advice, whether or not this is requested, to the Board, Essent and RWE, about RWE and Essent's compliance with the Sustainability Agreement and the Development Plan.

Every selling shareholder will have a seat on the Vendors' Board, with voting rights in accordance with their share interest in Essent N.V. that the shareholder held at the time the deal with RWE was closed.

The Foundation can enforce compliance by RWE and Essent with the obligations under the Sustainability Agreement. This requires a majority decision by the Vendors' Board.

The Essent Sustainability Development Foundation can submit a demand for compliance by Essent or RWE with the Sustainability Agreement with a Dutch arbitration court. Should it indeed be established by arbitral award that a breach of contract has occurred, Essent or RWE will forfeit to the Foundation liquidated damages in an amount of up to €40 million. The Foundation shall distribute any amounts received to the selling shareholders; the latter shall spend these amounts on sustainability energy projects in their region.