SPAIN is set to become the first major European country to get over 50% of its energy from renewable sources this year.
It will beat out competition from countries of comparable size in France, Germany, Italy, and the UK.
Spain’s strides ahead in renewable energy can be attributed to several factors.
The country’s countless days of sunshine – which lures so many north Europeans to its shores – has played a crucial role in its transition to solar power.
Authorities have also actively encouraged the integration of renewables into the grid through auctions and incentives to private companies, leading to a surge in capacity construction.
Unlike other parts of Europe, Spain’s auctions have been well-subscribed, demonstrating strong interest in renewable energy projects.
However, neighbouring France’s increasing dependence on importing energy from Spain is set to test the latter’s ability to maintain the 50% rate.
Meanwhile, the growing interest in Spain’s renewable sector has attracted investments from various energy companies.
Swiss developer Axpo plans to build a 200MW solar plant in Castilla y León, while Spanish power company Iberdrola and Norway’s sovereign wealth fund have committed to investing in 1.3GW of renewable capacity, with solar PV projects accounting for 80% of the total capacity.
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