Renewables associations criticize Spain’s ‘zero-cost’ auction of wind and biomass projects as untenable

Renewable energy wind turbines in Spain. Photo: CGoodwin via Wikimedia Commons
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• Producers’ cite unprofitability, doubt winners will actually develop projects •

Two of Spain’s largest groups of renewable energy producers have sharply criticized the country’s recent auction of 700 megawatts of electric capacity at zero cost as unsustainable and potentially undermining to Spain’s renewables sector.

The Asociacion de Empresas de Energias Renovables (Association of Renewable Energy Businesses, or APPA) said the zero-cost auction of 500 MW of wind and 200 MW of biomass capacity was won by small producers willing to risk unprofitability, while the Spanish wind-power industry group, Asociacion Empresarial Eolica (AEE), said the auction was “unrepresentative” as Spain’s major utility companies saw the auction as untenable and chose to sit out the bidding.

The renewables was the first since the conservative ruling Partido Popular (PP) government imposed a moratorium on new renewables auctions in 2012 and eliminated subsidies to producers for energy fed back into the national utility grid.

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