Spain to add 6,700 green megawatts by 2012

SPAIN - For the past few years, Spain has been committed to the development of a larger green-based power generation matrix.

Spain has been prompted to make these investments because of the country's dependence on conventional fossil-fueled sources of energy. As Spain has little of its own fossil-fuel resources, the country is highly dependent on imported fuel for power generation.

Additionally, fossil-fuel use is hindering Spain's progress in meeting emissions reductions set out by the Kyoto Protocol.

Currently, Spain is 35% above the emissions goals established by the Protocol for 2012.

The increasingly high prices of fossil fuel commodities in the past few years have caused awareness that serious thought must be given to shifting to using renewable sources of energy, which would help create a diversified energy base and an environmentally sound future. If achieved, these goals should have a positive effect on the economy and result in more stable conditions for Spain's manufacturing sector.

Most of Spain's renewable energy comes from wind and solar power. In 2009-10 an estimated 3,700 megawatts of new wind power will be brought online, bringing Spain total wind power to 20,155 MW. Another 1,700 MW is already planned to be operational by the end of 2012. After Germany, Spain is the largest wind-energy producer in Europe.

By the end of next year, 850 MW of new solar power will come online, creating an estimated installed generating capacity of 3,000 MW of solar power. Another 500 MW should be available by 2012. Spain is the fourth-largest manufacturer of solar power technology in the world and is home to the 20-MW Abengoa solar tower power plant, the world's largest such power plant, which started operations in April this year.


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