The Spanish National Energy and Climate Plan, submitted to the European Commission in January 2020, has not been updated in response to the new EU ambition in the ‘Fit For 55’ Package. The national Climate Change and Energy Transition Law, passed in April 2021, allows Spanish Ministers to increase the ambition of climate and energy objectives at any time. This is clearly feasible as Spain has already started to prepare and launch policies and measures to boost the energy transition, such as for green hydrogen, offshore wind, energy storage or prosumerism, and an auction of 3,3 GW of new wind and photovoltaic renewable electricity capacity in September 2021.
Greenhouse gas emissions fell by 5.6% in Spain in 2019 compared to 2018, to 314.5 Mt CO2-eq (total gross emissions), still 8.4% above 1990 levels although 28.9% lower than in 2005. This positive result is despite the fact that 2019 was a dry year, with a decrease in hydroelectric production of -27.6% compared to 2018, and, with GDP growth of 2%, showing a decoupling of emissions from economic activity. All sectors reduced their emissions, except transport and agriculture. The transport sector continues to emit the most, with 29% of the total. Emissions from ETS sectors fell by 14.2% in 2019 compared to the previous year and ESR emissions fell by 0.9%. Overall final energy consumption fell by 0.7% in 2019, with renewable energy sources generating 18.4% of the total and 36.9% of electricity consumption.
Spain has a great opportunity to deliver on a green and just recovery after the Covid-19 pandemic. It has all the necessary instruments to accelerate the green transition towards climate neutrality well before 2050. In particular, the massive investments planned in the Spanish Recovery and Resilience Plan should help to reach some NECP targets much sooner than 2030 and hence increase ambition for 2030. Further action is needed to address uncertainties provoked by high electricity and gas prices and protests at the wave of large new wind and solar installations in rural areas, and to increase the climate ambition of Spain’s Strategic Plan for Agriculture.
NOTE: When targets or projections from NECP or from another sectoral strategy document are available, the tool calculates the difference between the realised data and the target in percentage. The percentages that can be found on the country pages and on the right side of each graph are based on this calculation. If the country does not have projections or targets for the year of the latest realised data, the percentages do not exist.