Wind power production in Catalonia reaches 1,000 megawatts
The 36 wind farms currently in Catalan territory produce enough electricity to supply 2 million people every year and, at the same time, they place Catalonia eighth in the ranking of wind producers in Spain. According to the Catalan Government’s Energy Plan valid until 2015, wind power production could continue to grow and reach 3,500 megawatts.
Barcelona (ACN).- Wind farms installed throughout Catalonia can produce up to 1,000 megawatts of electricity at full capacity, according to information provided by EolicCat, the Catalan employers’ association of the sector. There are 36 wind farms currently running in Catalonia, six of which were completed in 2011. At the end of the year these wind facilities generated 4.2% of Catalonia’s power consumption, enough electricity to supply 2 million people. Furthermore, the operation of these devices saves 2.1 million tons of CO2 –the equivalent of what 700,000 cars produce- that would have otherwise been released into the atmosphere. Throughout 2011 wind turbines installed in Catalonia increased by 18.4%.
The first turbine of the wind farm Les Forques-II, in the southern county of Conca de Barberà, marked the remarkable figure of 1,000 megawatts. The latest four turbines to become operational this year were those belonging to the second phase of the wind farm Coll de la Garganta, halfway between the counties of Priorat and Ribera d’Ebre in the southern province of Tarragona.
Ramon Carbonell, up until now President of EolicCat, described the result as “a historical landmark”, even though he still believes wind energy must develop further in Catalonia. Carbonell, who has exhausted his mandate and will not stand for re-election, will be substituted during the next ordinary annual assembly of the association.
The Catalan Government’s Energy Plan 2006-2015, which is still used as a roadmap for wind power implementation, established a production capacity of 3,500 megawatts of wind power in Catalonia by 2015.
Wind energy’s present
Catalonia currently has 36 wind farms running that annually produce around 2,100 gigawatts-hour of electricity, the equivalent of 4.2% of the power consumption in the country.
The production of these wind farms in one year provides electricity to more than 640,000 Catalan homes (1,920,000 people or in other words, a city bigger than Barcelona). This avoids the emission of 2.1 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, the equivalent of removing 700,000 vehicles from the roads in one year. According to the latest information provided by the Wind Business Association (AEE), Catalonia ranks eighth in the list of wind power producers among the Autonomous Communities.