Renewable energy in Spain
Articles in ‘Renewable energy in Spain’
Image captured by Nasa’s Earth Observatory satellites last month
In a patchwork of agricultural fields outside Seville, Spain, two towers rise above the plain (at the centre of the top of the image). Nearby arrays of mirrors reflect light onto the towers, illuminating the water vapor and dust suspended in the air and creating visible beams. Within the towers, the thermal energy from the concentrated light creates steam, and the steam powers turbines to generate electricity. Known as PS10 and PS20, the mirror-tower networks are part of a larger project intended to meet the energy needs of some 180,000 homes roughly the energy needs of Seville by 2013, without greenhouse gas emissions
The Guardian claims that concentrated solar power, a field in which Spain leads the way, could generate “quarter of world’s energy”.
“Spain is leading the field on CSP: more than 50 solar projects in the country have been approved for construction by the government and, by 2015, it will generate more than 2GW of power from CSP, comfortably exceeding current national targets. Spanish companies are also exporting their technology around the world.”
Strong gales last week allowed yet another renewable energy record for Spain with almost 40% of the country’s energy needs being covered by wind turbines for several hours, with a record peak of 11,180mw being produced. Wind power has so far covered 11.5% of demand this year, 30% more than last year. Renewable energies provided 31% of total electricity supply in Spain in February, partly thanks to generous rains that boosted hydroelectric production.
The WWF has praised Spain’s efforts to develop renewable energy over the past 12 years.
- The Guardian
- Spanish wind power record
- Las renovables supera su objetivo de producir el 30% de la electricidad (WWF)
From The Guardian: “Spain’s investment in renewables is paying dividends for distributors whose costs have plunged this year as winds buffet the country.”
The record for electricity production from wind power was beaten again on 24th November at around 0500am when around 43% of power in Spain (9,253 MW) was covered. By the end of the year wind power will have covered 11% of Spain’s needs. Spain is the third-largest generator of wind power in the world, with about 16,000 MW of installed capacity with plans for 20,000 MW by 2010.
Juan López de Uralde in El Mundo
And on the topic of wind energy, the largest onshore wind farm in Europe started producing power yesterday today in northern Portugal. The farm is to provide enough electricity for up to a million people. A total of 120 windmills are dotted across the highlands of the Upper Minho region of Portugal which continues to forge its reputation as a renewables champion.
The world’s biggest solar tower plant is being built in 30km outside Sevilla. The technology known as concentrated solar power (CSP) reflects sunlight to superheat water at a central tower. Once the plant is opened in January, it will generate 20MW of electricity, enough to power 11,000 homes.
“Spanish firms are charging ahead with CSP: more than 50 solar projects around Spain have been approved for construction by the government and, by 2015, the country will generate more than 2GW of power from CSP, comfortably exceeding current national targets. The companies are also exporting their technology to Morocco, Algeria and the US. “CSP is at the very beginning of a big boom,” said José Luis García, at Greenpeace in Spain. “Spain is in a good position to develop and implement the technology. We have the sun so we are in the best position to lead in this field.”
Read in the Guardian
The area around Sierra Brava Reservoir and Casas de Hitos is one of the most important wintering area for cranes, waterfowl and steppe birds in Extremadura. It is now under threat from the proposed building of several thermosolar power stations, which it appears could very easily be sited elsewhere. As Clive points out on the forum. “It is important to note that the problem here is not the new technology itself for energy production but the poorly researched situation of the proposed plan”. See also SEO’s page in English on this story.
- “This will suppose the direct occupation of more than 300 hectares of land, directly on the principal winter roost of the common crane in Europe, with 11,325 cranes registered there last year.
- Those two solar power plants also include a natural gas combustion unit each, to maintain the energy production during cloudy days, which will suppose the installation of both tall chimneys for the evacuation of waste gases and of cooling towers.
- In order to be able to use the energy produced, both power stations will share an electrical substation and a new high voltage power line more than 38 km in lengh, to connect with the grid at Valdecaballeros, and which will affect the entire Vegas Altas del Guadiana zone, including two SPAs.
Martin kelsey of Birding Extremadura has brought this to the attention of iberianature so thanks to him, and he has drafted the following series of letters for you to get in contact with the authorities in Extremadura. Revenue from birding tourism now represents quite a fair of amount for Extremadura and the more people that contest this, the more the Extremaduran authorities are likely to rethink such a poorly planned scheme. Read the rest of this entry