Spain’s sunshine going to waste

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Government’s stance discourages small-scale energy producers

With its year round sunshine and ever-increasing electricity costs, Spain should be the perfect subject for continued R&D in the solar energy industry.

As any disgruntled household bill payer in Spain can attest, the country has the fourth-highest electricity prices in Europe, averaging out at a monthly rate of €80 per person.

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In the last decade, technological advancements in the field have made it easier for people and businesses to produce their own electricity with guidance and backing from organisations such as Plataforma para un Nuevo Modelo Energetico (Platform for a New Energy Model) and Som Energia (We Are Energy).

Self-production is a costly process and producers often find themselves out-of pocket initially, with equipment costing tens of thousands of euros.

Historically, the Spanish government offered subsidies to self-producers, as well as helpful schemes to buy surplus energy from producers for public use.

However, recent reports tell a different story for small-scale renewable producers today. If draft legislation gets the go ahead in congress and from Brussels, the payment system for surplus energy will be revoked and subsidies will no longer be readily available. In fact, those self-producers who conserve their solar power in batteries, to use at night, will face additional taxation.

The prevailing explanation for this shift is that the government is protecting the country´s main electricity producers and distributors.

The government´s policy on self-production is starkly different to that of its European neighbours, many have which have embraced the process and introduced schemes to encourage conservation and allow nighttime use of surplus energy, without the hefty price tag.

2 COMMENTS

  1. This is to be expected in a highly protectionist country where the politicians are also not afraid to be openly in the pockets of Big Business. But the times they are a-slowly changin’, so hopefully the new anti-corruption parties will start to put and end to this lunacy.

  2. Unfortunately if it changes it will be a painfully slow process that will still be going on in most of the lifetimes of people that are reading this, the Spanish courts can’t cope with normal issues never mind the endless corruption cases and even when they do get processing these crimes the people have hidden the money and their sentences are miserable… they are even allowed to take up office again after 2 years! Nothing much will change here while the lunatics are running the asylum 😉

    BTW, you mention new anti-corruption parties, what parties are these? Podemos are loosing their support because of corruption issues as are Cuidanos, lots of people like to talk about anti corruption but they are as deep into it as everyone else, Suzanna Diez said she wants to eliminate corruption in the Junta… thats a joke when she is as corrupt as the rest of them, you give a Spanish person access to power and you have created a different person instantly.
    More than one Spanish person has said to me: We have some good politicians with great ideas but the moment they get some power they become corrupt and forget everything they said before.

    Don’t hold your breath waiting 😉

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