On Friday New Energy Economy filed our testimony opposing the merger agreement between PNM and Iberdrola/Avangrid. New Mexico law requires that the PRC determine whether any utility acquisition is "in the public interest." New Energy Economy along with the Attorney General, and all but one of the 12 additional intervenors is arguing that the merger is not in the public interest and that the risks outweigh the benefits.
Avangrid is a publicly traded worldwide energy conglomerate with approximately $36 billion in assets and operations in 24 U.S. states. Iberdrola, (located in Spain), owns 81.5% of Avangrid’s stock. This merger agreement would make PNM 2.8% of an international energy giant, a small and unimportant part of their global strategy for energy domination. Foreign ownership brings additional challenges to the proposed transaction. Foreign ownership raises questions of foreign control and governance, the impacts of operating in locations that may have very different business practices from those in the United States; although Iberdrola is a Spanish company, 8.69% of Iberdrola is owned by Qatar Investment Authority, which itself is wholly-owned by Qatar’s Sovereign Wealth Fund.
In New Mexico we value our local traditions, our land, our acequias, our farms and farmer's markets. This merger represents the opposite of that local ethos.