- Spanish Energy Ministry has given a favorable environmental impact statement to 27.9 GW renewable energy capacity
- It comprises 24.75 GW solar PV, 2.89 GW wind and 294 MW hybrid projects capacity
- These projects now need to clear remaining administrative prerequisites to come online
The Spanish Ministry for the Ecological Transition and the Demographic Challenge (MITECO) has provided a favorable environmental impact statement (DIA) to 27.9 GW of new renewable energy capacity in the country 88% of which represents solar PV projects, out of 35.8 GW it evaluated for the purpose.
Of the 202 files of 35.8 GW renewable energy projects evaluated by the ministry, 27.9 GW secured a favorable DIA. The latter includes 133 solar PV projects representing 24.75 GW, 20 wind facilities accounting for 2.89 GW and 2 hybrid projects of 294 MW capacity.
Among solar PV projects cleared, 7.029 GW are located in Castilla y Leon alone, another 5.947 GW in Madrid, 5.083 GW in Castilla la Mancha and 4.307 GW in Andalucia.
Each favorable DIA includes the appropriate corrective and compensatory measures to minimize the possible environmental effects generated in the construction and exploitation phase of the projects, as well as the conditions of the Environmental Surveillance Plan to be developed, it added.
With this, MITECO says it has now evaluated all projects with grid connection rights under its jurisdiction that needed to have their DIA done by the deadline of January 25, 2023. Now, the ones with favorable DIA need to clear remaining permitting requirements to enter construction, as stipulated under the country’s Royal Decree-Law 23/2020 (see Way Cleared For Spanish Renewable Energy Auctions).
According to the ministry, “RDL 23/20 establishes that projects with access and connection rights received between December 31, 2017 and June 25, 2020 – the date of approval of said regulation – expired on January 25 and MITECO has evaluated all projects under its jurisdiction.”
A local news report in late-2022 claimed the ministry was scurrying to process and clear permits for close to 100 GW of renewable energy before the January 25, 2023 deadline, failing which it feared being sued by developers (see Spain Speedily Processing 100 GW Renewable Energy Capacity).
Taking the expected MITECO decision into consideration in its recent analysis, SolarPower Europe in its Dec. 2022 published EU Market Outlook forecasted strong growth for the Spanish market for the coming years. “Spain’s solar prospects have increased the most from 2021. The gigantic Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) project development pipeline, the quickly growing self-consumption rooftop segment, and the development of hydrogen projects are pushing the Iberian market to unprecedent levels. Under our Medium Scenario, it is now expected to add 51.2 GW over the next 4 years, a spectacular increase from the 18.9 GW forecasted last year.”