Spain’s Balearic Islands to replace thermal power generation with solar parks


The Departement of Energy of Spain’s Balearic Islands has unveiled a new energy strategy that aims to reduce power production from fossil fuels and increase electricity generation from solar source.

The new strategy, dubbed Energía el Plan de Transición Energética, is planning to increase to 10% the share of renewables in the islands’ energy mix by 2020. As for the island of Menorca, the government said, this share may even reach 20%, thus enabling it to comply with the EU target.

The new plan includes the closure of the most contaminating unit of Endesa’s Es Murterar, a 585 MW coal- and gas-fired power located in Central de Alcudia, in the island of Mallorca. The closure of these units will be performed in several stages, the first of which will be concluded in 2020.

In order to replace the missing generation capacity, the local government will support the increase power generation from natural gas and the construction of several large-scale solar plants at a first stage. In a second phase, the government specified, the share of solar and renewables will be increased and that of diesel and natural gas will be gradually reduced.

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The government said that the largest part of this plan will be implemented in 2019, without providing specific information on the solar parks that are planned for the region. According to local newspaper Diario de Mallorca, that are currently five PV projects under development in the archipelago, of which four will be located in Mallora and one in Menorca.

According to the Spanish grid operator Red Electrica de Espana, the Balearic Island had around 78 MW of installed PV capacity at the end of 2015.

In a separate development, the Department of Energy announced it will provide incentives for the installation of residential and commercial PV systems up to 30 kW through a specific scheme. The tender for the program was launched in late May.

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