Call for Spain to switch fully to renewables
Via Yahoo News: MADRID (AFP) – Some 4,000 environmental campaigners gathered in Barcelona on Saturday to press the government to commit Spain to switch fully to renewable energy sources by 2050, Greenpeace said.
Greenpeace in February began a campaign to urge Spain to boost use of renewables, although the country is already a European leader in the field.
Eva Salana, spokeswoman for the environmental pressure group, told the Europa Press news agency that “it is technically and economically possible” to achieve the aim.
Greenpeace used Saturday’s meeting to boost public awareness of the issue through an exhibition dubbed “time tunnel,” showing scenarios of how countries could work together to combat climate change.
(Via Suite 101 – Climate Change/Paul Read): Back in February of this year, Al Gore spoke about Spain´s role in in the race to offset the damage of global climate change. Spain, he said, could lead the world in renewable energy use. Al Gore has said this of many a country during his Inconvenient Truth tours, but his words took on an additional weight as Greenpeace released its conclusions last week about how Spain could live up to the fossil fuel challenge in the decades ahead and reiterated much of what the Vice President said.
Alternatives to fossil fuels
The report entitled: 100% Renewable. An Electrical System for the Spanish Peninsular and its Economic Viability, states that by 2020, Spain could have 50% of its electrical needs proveded from renewable resources and by the year 2050, it could be producing 100% of its energy needs exclusively from non fossil fuel sources.
Bold, visionary and perhaps not unrealistic claims for this southern European country that can in places enjoy up to 320 days of sunshine per year. With over 5.000 km of coastline, the sunniest climate and the highest mountains in Europe outside Switzerland it would appear to have the resource potential to fulfil some of both Mr. Gore´s and Greenpeace´s claims.
120.000 million Euros
According to the Director General of Greenpeace in Spain, Juan López de Uralde, the report is both viable in economical and technological terms and that the time to act is now and with urgency. Uralde states that although Spain has the technology, it does not have the time to wait before starting to apply it. According to the Greenpeace report, the costs of conversion would be 120.000 million euros to be spent over a 25 year period. The success of such a plan would depend on the distribution of the energy production centres so that at low production periods the storage facilities would be close to the end consumer.
Each autonomous region would have specific production capabilities according to its ecological potential: Andalusia in the south, would be able to produce more energy from the sun, integrated into the very buildings of towns and cities, whilst a region such as Galicia on the Atlantic coast could maximise its potential for wave power and wind generation. The success of the plan would depend on maximising this variation in production and geographical siting.