Tue. Apr 23rd, 2019

This is the climate plan that Spain sends to Brussels: no coal, less nuclear and 42% renewable | Society

This is the climate plan that Spain sends to Brussels: no coal, less nuclear and 42% renewable | Society



The Council of Ministers approved on Friday the great climate program of the Government of Pedro Sánchez. The problem is that all the measures (which are articulated through an anti-draft climate change law, a draft energy and climate plan and a draft just transition strategy) they will not be able to be put in march during this legislature and will depend on the Executive that leaves the elections of the 28 of April. The electoral advance and tensions within the Government itself against measures that affect all the ministries have delayed the implementation of this package.

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Spain has even failed to meet the deadlines set by the European Commission to send the so-called integrated energy and climate plan, which should have been sent to Brussels on December 31. Several countries have been delayed. But Spain has been the last to send it. That draft must be reviewed by the Commission and submitted to public information. And the next government will have to approve it later.

In any case, these are the most important aspects of the climate package approved by the Council of Ministers this Friday and that could well be considered Sanchez's program in terms of environment, energy or transport for the next decade. It contemplates that 42% of the energy consumption is of renewable origin in 2030, for when it calculates that the electricity bill could fall by 12% thanks to these measures. In addition, the proposal of the Executive of Sanchez involves the closure of coal plants, the veto of engines that emit carbon dioxide from 2040 and 1,000 million in aid for the electric car until 2025.

Reduction of greenhouse gases. The overall goal is a 2030 reduction of 21% of greenhouse gases compared to 1990 levels. The overall EU goal, however, is almost double, 40%. The Ministry for the Ecological Transition, responsible for the plan, argues that for years no policies have been undertaken to cut and at this time Spain is 17% above the 1990 emissions.

Electricity. The measures contemplated in the draft plan focus a very important part of the reduction of emissions in the electricity sector. In 2030, according to the plan, they will reduce 69% of greenhouse gas emissions in this sector compared to now.

Renewables. And one of the most important legs planned is the implementation of renewables. By 2030, 42% of all final energy consumption would be of renewable origin. And in the specific case of the electricity sector, 74% of all electricity produced would be generated with renewable technologies. This would occur, according to the plan, thanks to the increase in photovoltaic energy (which would multiply by nine), wind (multiplied by two) and the implementation of storage technologies such as pumping through reservoirs.

Carbon. Coal is one of Spain's burdens in the fight against climate change. It accounts for around 15% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the country. The different European standards will mean that in 2020 there will only be five of the 15 open coal thermal plants. By 2030, the Government assures that it does not contemplate that there is any open, although the plan leaves a door open for a power plant to operate, something quite complicated by the evolution of the markets and the European regulations, increasingly stricter with the thermal

Nuclear. The generation of electricity through nuclear technology does not produce emissions of greenhouse gases, but radioactive waste very complex to manage. The plan sent by the Government to Brussels contemplates a calendar of closing of the five power stations between 2025 and 2030. The ministry has tried to find a middle ground between the promise of the PSOE to close all power plants by the age of 40 (which should occur in 2028) and the intention of some electricians to be able to carry them up to, even, the 60. In any case, this could be one of the points that change if the Government changes after April 28, since the PP is a supporter since years ago to extend the life of nuclear.

Transport. The reduction of costs in the renewable sector has meant that doubts about the implementation of these technologies in electricity generation are clear. However, the road transport sector is very behind in the fight against climate change and pollution. The draft bill establishes, as planned, that in 2040 cars that emit carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas, can no longer be sold in Spain. It is the same goal that the Commission has set for the whole EU. The ministry maintains that, if the measures it has designed are applied, in 2030 16% of the entire fleet (cars, motorcycles, vans ...) will be electric, which means about five million vehicles. In addition, the Executive considers that between 2020 and 2025 about 1,000 million would be devoted to aid to the electric car.

Bill of light and investments. The energy and climate plan would involve an investment of some 236,000 million between 2021 and 2030. 80% of these investments would be private. And the remaining 20%, about 47,000 million, public. The ministry ensures that all measures would make it possible to reduce the electricity bill by 12% (excluding taxes) in 2030. And that between 250,000 and 364,000 new jobs would be created, an increase of 1.7% in 2030. Investments in energy Renewables would imply the greatest job creation.

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