Spain – Spain has achieved significant progress toward its goal of reaching net zero emissions by 2050, but future advances must be supported by stable policies, enough public financing, and incentives for private investment, according to a new policy analysis by the International Energy Agency.
Since the IEA’s previous in-depth evaluation in 2015, Spain has solved a long-standing problem of power and gas rates not covering expenses, and has shuttered all of its coal mines, allowing the country to prioritize climate change and align its goals with EU aims and ambitions.
Spain’s 2050 goal of national climate neutrality asks for renewables to produce 100 percent of electricity and 97 percent of total energy mix. The country’s energy policy are centered on the huge deployment of renewable energy, energy efficiency, electrification, and renewable hydrogen.
Not enough increase in renewables
While the amount of renewables in the power sector has increased, the analysis indicates that Spain’s entire energy balance is still largely dominated by fossil fuels. Notably, the transportation, industrial, and construction sectors all have significant work ahead of them in order to reach the country’s renewables penetration and decarbonization ambitions.
At the same time, Spain has emphasized the significance of establishing a just transition to guarantee that communities in traditional energy regions and sectors, particularly coal mining, are not left behind by the changes.
The IEA report acknowledges that Spain is making progress toward its 2030 ambitions, particularly in the electricity sector. Following a downturn between 2013 and 2018 due to a lack of financial incentives, renewable energy investments took off again in 2019. Renewables’ contribution in the national electricity mix increased from 33% in 2010 to 44% by 2020.
The government intends to increase renewable energy installations in households and companies, as well as promote the use of renewable energy in industry and heating. It also wants to encourage the production of advanced biofuels, renewable gases, and hydrogen.