The serious effects of climate change on our planet, ecosystems and populations make this one a particularly important moment: it is the end of fossil fuel and the beginning of a new era of renewable energies.
Renewable energies play an important role to mitigate the effects of climate change which is endorsed by the international development of these technologies and the increased percentage of these in each country’s energy mix.
There are important differences among countries regarding the implementation of policies and development of technology and the presence of renewable energies in the energy-mix. In its Common Directive on renewable energy, the EU establishes binding objectives in which renewable energies must represent 20% of the total energy consumption by 2020. In order to achieve this objective, renewable energies development must be fostered and special importance must be given to the immense amount of energy our oceans and seas have to offer.
The promotion of marine wind and other technologies that use the oceans as an energy source (waves, tides, currents…) is crucial if we intend to halt the effects climate change is having on our oceans. However, Spain, which is fourth in the world’s ranking of wind energy producers and second in Europe, is now in disadvantage compared to other countries in northern Europe that have made a clear commitment to developing marine wind energy.
According to sources from the European Wind Energy Association (EWEA), offshore power in Europe in 2020 is expected to reach 40,000MW and 150,000MW in 2030. Currently, Spain does not have any marine MW, not even a testing turbine. The Renewable Energy Plan 2005-2010 considered the possibility of installing 10,000 testing marine MW on our coasts. According to the current process mandated by the RD 1028/2007 and within the best odds, we would have to wait at least until 2016 to see the first marine MW in Spain.
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