Green energy: Much lost ground to regain for Spain

Govt support for the sector slashed since 2011; policy U-turn needed if 2020 energy goals are to be met


A FORMER global champion of renewable energy, Spain has much to do to make up the ground it lost during the economic crisis when it reversed its policy slashing subsidies, decimating the sector.

With roughly 300 days of sunshine per year and regions that receive strong winds, Spain was a world leader in 2007-08 in solar and wind power production, helped by generous state subsidies.

But the sharp economic downturn that followed the collapse of a decade-long property bubble in 2008 put the brakes on the development of renewable energy as the government scaled back support.

Jorge Puebla, a 41-year-old firefighter, suffered the fallout from his energy investment. "They ruined my life," the father...

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