Spain aims for the green

Last November the Spanish government of socialist Pedro Sanchez (PSOE) has announced a very promising clean energy plan for the upcoming years. Indeed, the minister for ecologic transition Mrs. Teresa Ribera proposed a new law on climate change and energetic transition, aiming for 70% of renewable electricity (100% by 2050) and 35% of final green energy by 2030. Those objectives are even more ambitious than those of the European parliament, expecting member states to have 32% of renewable energies by 2030.

By focusing on Spain’s energy consumption over the last few decades, an impressive evolution can be noticed. Regarding its electricity production, Spain has among the highest rates of renewable energies in Europe, reaching 40,7% in 2016 and 32,2% in 2017. Due to its advantageous geographic position, wind (18,2%), solar (5,2%) and hydraulic (7%) energy offer a promising future for the claimed objectives.

The new law shall improve the actual statistics but also has its controversial content. In order to achieve those objectives, 20% of the national budget has to have a “positive impact” on climate change with measures as the energetic rehabilitation of 100.000 housings every year between 2021 and 2030. Big sized cities (more than 100.000 inhabitants) will have to elaborate climate protection strategies starting in 2020.

Ribera’s law proposition directly tackles the Spanish fossil resource extraction industry by banishing oil and gas exploitation and fracking in the country’s territory. Besides, the starting in 2040 prohibition of selling diesel, fuel, gas or hybrid cars worries the Spanish association of cars and trucks manufacturers (ANFAC). It claims that the those objectives would be way too ambitious and also have a negative impact on the industrial economy, since the car industry represents 10% of the country’s GDP. More specific accompaniment measures would be required.

Even though the plan has been very saluted by environmental actors, its implementation still requires the approval of the Spanish bicameral Cortes Generals. Since the socialists only occupy a quarter of the seats, the passing of the climate plan relies on the more leftwing party Podemos and the liberals of the Ciudadanos.





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