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Catalonia must invest €60 billion in renewables, Chamber of Commerce warns

The entity makes a call for unblocking projects, underlining the need to act with urgency

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12 January 2022 05:40 PM

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ACN | Barcelona

Catalonia must invest €60 billion in renewable energy sources over the next three decades if climate neutrality is to be reached, according to the Chamber of Commerce. 

The entity has carried out a study that says Catalonia should increase its renewable energy generation up to 67,071 megawatts in 30 years’ time. This target would be 62,980 MW more than those in place last year. For this reason, the body has called for projects submitted to be unblocked and to avoid depending on other territories. 

"It is necessary to act with great urgency. Since 2013, no new renewable energy facility has been installed," speaker Monica Roca said.

Thus, according to the chamber’s calculations, Catalonia should spend an average of 0.67% of GDP each year to have an energy system comprised of 100% renewables by 2050 and be “energy sovereign.” This investment should start this year with €789 million to reactivate the sector, which has been paralyzed by moratoriums due to complaints from the territories affected by the renewable energy parks.

The report also indicates that over 17% of all of Catalonia will have to be used for the generation of renewable energy, but it clarifies that a third of this could be covered by the rooftops in cities or industrial estates.

Chamber representatives were keen to point out that much of this progress in the development of clean energy should materialize before 2030, when the closure of Catalan nuclear power plants is scheduled to begin. 

Faced with the risk that renewable energy will be developed quicker in other areas, the president of the Chamber of Commerce insisted that "the Catalonia of the future cannot depend on other territories." 

Roca reiterated that there is a need for "everyone's efforts" and for a "cultural change" to be achieved to overcome this "major challenge."

Struggles to generate renewable energy

"We're doing very badly." That's the assessment of Sergi Saladié i Gil, a Geography professor at the University of Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona, when Catalan News asked how Catalonia is doing in terms of renewable energy.

Catalonia is lagging behind the Spanish and European averages when it comes to generating renewable energy and desparately need to go green if targets are to be met. 50% of all energy consumed should come from renewable sources by 2030 - a figure that needs to increase to 100% by 2050 according to the 2017 Catalan climate change law.

Listen to our podcast from April 2021 on the debate surrounding the Gulf of Roses wind farm.

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  • A wind farm in Catalonia (by Salvador Miret)

  • A wind farm in Catalonia (by Salvador Miret)

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