The photovoltaic park in Son Baulo, Can Picafort.

18-05-2011Elena Ballestero

The Balearic government would appear to have suffered a further setback in its move towards renewable energy.

In November last year, the regional energy minister Marc Pons met the secretary-of-state for energy Daniel Navia in Madrid. He was accompanied by representatives of the renewables business sector. Navia informed Pons that European funding of 60 million euros was being studied. This amount, it was understood, would be for the Balearics and the Canaries and be forthcoming during the first quarter of this year.

The 60 million euros from the European Regional Development Fund are instead to all be allocated to boosting wind energy in the Canaries. The decision has come as something of a shock to the renewables sector in the Balearics, where the focus is on photovoltaic parks.

There are at present plans for eleven of these parks. They all have the necessary permissions and are just waiting for some public funding. The scale of these projects - in total there would be 35 megawatts - is small and so therefore they need public funding in order to make them financially viable and profitable.

Pons says that he will request a new meeting with Madrid. Establishing photovoltaic parks is essential for the government's plans for energy transition and combating the effects of climate change. The long-term aim, by 2050, is for the Balearics to have 100% renewable energy. Currently, renewables account for a mere two per cent of energy supply. The government's plan to progressively shut down the coal-fired Es Murterar power station in Alcudia has run up against opposition from Madrid.


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Steve Riches / Hace over 2 years

Masses of sunshine for Mallorca and hardly a solar panel to be seen. The politicians feathering their nests in many way need to pull their fingers out and offer huge incentives for solar power in large-scale ground level installations and on-roof panels. Or does none of that offer any back-pocket income?