2010 analysis: main findings
The results of the 2010 Climate Policy Tracker noted the important initiatives in renewable electricity generation and use of renewables in buildings, but it found that policy was lacking for other sectors, in particular the transport sector. An integrated long-term, low-carbon plan is needed to replace the national climate strategy, which is only in place until 2020. The lack of overall ambition was shown, for example by the 2020 target for Spain, which according to the EU climate and energy package would result in +31% greenhouse gas emissions compared to 1990. This target was less ambitious for 2020 than for 2012 (+15% compared to 1990).
- In Spain, a well functioning feed-in premium scheme for renewable electricity generation is in place; Spain is amongst the world-leaders regarding installed capacity. The focus is on wind and solar technologies. However, the policy framework has been unstable lately. In 2009, a cap was introduced for solar and wind and retroactive changesto the incentive framework for renewables irritated producers and investors.
- Spainhas introduced an obligation to use solar thermal energy (30-70% of warm water demand) and introduced a minimum contribution to electricity consumption by photovoltaics (PV), for new and retrofitted buildings. It will save approx. 30%-40% of energy use per household.
- Spain’s draft Renewable Action Plan until 2020 proposes the lowering of the 2020 renewables target from 22.7% to 20.8%. This is counterproductive to the achievement of the long-term target of a low-carbon economy and underestimates the Spanish potential. In addition, stability is needed to restore the trust of investors in renewable energies in Spain. Thus the objective of a 22.7% share of renewables in final energy consumption should be maintained or increased.
- More coherence in energy policies is needed to prioritise CO2 reduction. Spain should avoid supporting coal subsidies and instead maintain and increase support for renewable energies.
- Spainshould introduce measures reduce CO2 emissions from the transport sector, which was the largest greenhouse gas emitting sector in 2009. Emissions from transport have increased by 71% since 1990 and are above average in other sectors. Plans to build new roads could increase transport-related emissions even further. The reduced speed limit, introduced in April 2011, was only a temporary measure and not sufficient for the sector.