ECONOMY

Coca-Cola Hellenic to build power plants, cut emissions

Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company, the world’s second-biggest bottler of Coke beverages, will have new power plants built at a cost of -225 million ($331 million) as the European Union tightens rules to cut greenhouse emissions by a fifth over the next 12 years. A total of 15 new power plants are to be constructed by the end of 2009 in 12 countries, including Italy, Russia, Ukraine, Northern Ireland, Poland and Nigeria, the Athens, Greece-based Coca-Cola HBC said yesterday in a regulatory filing. The combined heat-and-power plants will help reduce the company’s annual carbon dioxide emissions by «at least 40 percent per plant, compared with current energy use” provided by conventional energy providers, the statement said. The plants will be financed by New-York based energy fund ContourGlobal LLC, which will build the units, George Toulantas, investor relations officer at Coca-Cola HBC, said in a telephone interview. ContourGlobal will sell the plants’ electricity to the bottler over a period of 15 years before handing them over to Hellenic. «It’s effectively a self-funded scheme,» Toulantas said. Coca-Cola HBC bottles sodas, water and juice in 27 European countries and Nigeria. The Coca-Cola Company has a 24 percent stake in the company. The company decided to go ahead with the plan after if found that its combined heat-and-power plant in Hungary reduced carbon dioxide emissions by 43 percent and energy costs by 400,000 euros, the statement said.