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Let's talk about renewable energy

08 October 2018

The green revolution is growing more and more, generating new spaces for investment and employment. The voices that firmly stand on the side of these green technologies are becoming more numerous and stronger every day.


On September 19, Teresa Ribera, Minister of Ecological Transition, appeared before the Ecological Transition Commission of the Spanish Congress. She presented the measures that the government is going to adopt in order to stop the rising of the electricity bills that has occurred recently. She also used the opportunity to expose her proposals focused on an absolute decarbonization of the economy.

The basic pillars of the energy policy of the new minister are based on a report of 22 pages, prepared by the Advisory Council for the Ecological Transition of the Economy (CAPTE), council under the direction of the minister herself  and from which we extracted the following charts:

On page 11 of the mentioned report, we extracted the following paragraph: "These considerations invite us to conclude that, under an adequate regulatory framework, the closure of coal and nuclear factories in Spain would involve a very small additional cost for the electric consumer, although the greater penetration of renewables would bring undoubtedly external benefits both of an environmental nature (reduction of emissions) and of an economic nature (generation of employment, change in the productive model, creation of a business network, reduction of energy dependence, improvement of the balance of payments, etc.). "

We also insert a chart with data from the European factories with the highest emissions, issued by Manuel Planelles on May 7, 2018.

We note that two of the twenty top factories (electric power plants in this case), are the Spanish factories of Aboño and As Pontes at the end of this ranking.

Regarding the sentence at the beginning of this article " the rising of the electricity bills that has occurred recently “, we repeat a small paragraph taken from Joaquín Coronado’s article in El Periódico de la Energía on September 20, 2018: "The price of electricity in the wholesale market reached yesterday, coinciding with the day of the appearance of the minister, was the historical maximum of 75.93 Euros per megawatt-hour, and with today's price of 74.45 Euros we have reached already twelve consecutive days over 70 Euros, circumstance that has never happened before since this market was created 20 years ago. "According to the emission of Cadena Ser radio of September 19,2018: "So far this month the kWh electricity price has risen by 23% on year-on-year base.

We will try to list some of the MAIN PROPOSALS exposed during the appearance the Minister Teresa Ribera before the Congress Energy Commission on September 19, 2018, as well as we add some comments of response (critical or not) of different agents of the sector.

1. Suspension of the 7% tax on the value of the electric power generation.

It supposes more than 1,700 million Euros that would be left to enter. The critics oscillate around how to compensate this reduction in the income, and on the other hand it is emphasized (Cadena Ser) that it is a tax suspension and not an elimination. Joaquín Coronado in El Periódico de la Energía: "The tax on the electric power generation of electricity that now will be removed has been judged during the last five years. There has been a discrepancy over its legality between the Supreme Court and the Constitutional Court."

2. Improvement of light and heating coverage for the most vulnerable consumer.

It’s about the energy poverty issue. "It’s a priority," the minister said.

- The electric social bond will be maintained but "improved".

-A social bond for heating will be implemented.

3. Deep and structural reforms of the electricity system

Decreasing the weight of the wholesale market and reforming the wholesale market itself, according to Cadena Ser.

Approval of the Royal Decree on Access and Connection, which will facilitate the permits extension to access the electricity network for renewable projects awarded on the auctions of 2016 and 2017 and support of the repowering of wind farms, as reported by AEE.

There is a kind of consensus among the different sector agents, about the reform needed by the energy sector should be:

a) Steady in time.

b) Transversal for the entire country economy.

c) Agreed with the different social and political agents.

Juan Virgilio, presidente de AEE: “Es necesaria una planificación energética, que establezca qué tecnologías necesita el país en el mix energético en función de parámetros como la demanda eléctrica, la disponibilidad de recurso, la situación industrial…”

UNEF, on the other hand, highlights of the minister's speech, the following below:

Certain barriers in the deployment of renewable energy will be eliminated, such as avoiding the speculation of permits, taking advantage of existing access points and promote shorter procedures.

PPAs or bilateral energy purchase agreements will be provided, shifting demand from the wholesale market to bilateral contracting to fix and maintain steady prices.

An auction calendar will be set.

"For UNEF, of all the announced measures, the one that best responds to the claims (...) has been the one related to energy self-consumption. From UNEF we welcome:

Modification of the Electricity Sector Law in the terms of the Self-Consumption Law Proposal

No charges nor tolls to support self-consumed energy

Promote shared self-consumption

Exempt small facilities from registration

Boost simplification of administrative processes

Improve rates for the agricultural sector /irrigators and toll reduction for self-consumption. "

“Fundación Renovables” among the announced measures, highlights the following:

eliminate the 'Sun Tax', to boost self-consumption,

the promotion of the shared modality

access to bidirectional counters

as well as suspend the 7% tax for power generation that at the end affected the final user.

Finally, we collect some opinions from different agents of the sector:


(JOAQUÍN CORONADO September 20, 2018): Suspension of the 7% tax on power generation, the first decision of a more significant reform? 

Apparently, there was a first appearance of the Minister before the Congress Energy Commission, on July 11, 2018. (MANUEL ROCA September 12, 2018): “Ribera turns the energy sector upside down: now we just need to know how much the invoice is and who pays it”.

The appearance of the minister is on the following website: 


(September 21, 2018): UNEF evaluation of the measures announced by the Minister for the Ecological Transition


(JUAN VIRGILIO MÁRQUEZ, AEE CEO, September 20, 2018)


(September 20, 2018): Fundación Renovables, asks Teresa Ribera to put lyrics and rhythm to her melody of the Energy Transition


(ELIZO MEIZOSO September 19, 2018): The Government will suspend the 7% tax on power generation to lower the electricity bill


(JOSE MIGUEL VILLARIG, PRESIDENT OF APPA RENOVABLES June 28, 2018): The necessary impulse of the Government to the renewables

APPA announcement was before the minister appearance.


(September 19, 2018): Teresa Ribera appears in Congress due to the electricity price increase.


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