• Spain’s Ministry of Ecological Transition gets its draft bill of Climate Change and Energy Transition Law approved by the Council of Ministers
  • Under the draft, Spain will aim for 74% of renewable energy generation in the total energy mix by 2030, and expand it to 100% by 2050
  • Solar PV’s share among renewables is 37 GW, next only to wind that’s expected to add 50 GW by 2030
  • Renewables deployment will be remunerated by way of competitive auction mechanism
  • The ministry is now seeking feedback and suggestions from general public on the draft, post which the draft will again be placed before the Council of Ministers for final approval

Spanish Council of Ministers has approved the draft bill of its Climate Change and Energy Transition Law (LCCTE) submitted by the Ministry of Ecological Transition (MITECO) that sets 100% of renewable energy as the country’s goal to be achieved by the year 2050. Under the scheme of things, Spain will target 37 GW of solar power capacity till 2030. Needless to say, it will bring Spain to the centre stage in the European solar market.

As per the preliminary draft bill of the LCCTE presented by the incumbent administration, Spain will aim for 74% renewable energy generation and 42% renewable energy consumption out of total energy by 2030. By 2050, the goal is to reach 100% renewable energy electricity system with zero greenhouse gas emissions (GHG).

Elaborating on the government’s recommendations, online news portal Spain’s News reported that by 2030 total installed electricity capacity of the country is envisioned to be 157 GW, of which 50 GW will be wind power, 37 GW PV, 27 GW combined gas cycles, 16 GW hydro, 8 GW pumped storage, 7 GW solar thermal and 3 GW of nuclear power. Final closure of the coal plants will take place in 2050, it said, while nuclear energy will be phased out in chronological order.

Competitive auction mechanisms are recommended to be the basis for remuneration for renewable energy contracted on a long-term basis.

While Spain’s News called the plan ambitious, Spanish photovoltaic association UNEF emphasised that the PV sector has the will and capacity to invest and develop this 37 GW by 2030, which means adding 3 GW of PV capacity annually. The green transition plan approved by the government represents a ‘great opportunity’ for economic development, employment generation and cheaper energy access for the Spanish society, it said.

In 2018, Spain installed a rather disappointing 261.7 MW of solar power capacity with 235.7 MW coming from self-consumption space (see Spain Installed 261.7 MW Solar In 2018). However, this year around 4 GW won in auctions needs to be installed, which will likely turn Spain in Europe’s largest PV market.

Spain’s Minister Teresa Ribera heading MITECO said these measures comply with the Paris Agreement on Climate Change. LCCTE is one of the three elements of the Strategic Energy and Climate Framework, with the remaining two being the National Integrated Energy and Climate Plan 2021-2030 (PNIEC) submitted to the European Commission, and Fair Transition Strategy.

Having secured approval from the Council of Ministers, the ministry has now submitted all three proposals including the LCCTE draft for public opinion. Once the feedback is considered and incorporated, it will table these once more before the Council of Ministers for final approval. Comments will be accepted till March 22, 2019. Details are available on the ministry’s website.

All said and done, it remains to be seen if everything goes according to plan.  After loosing a vote on its budge proposal, the present government under Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez has called for general elections that will take place on April 28, 2019.