Energy minister Marc Pons yesterday formally signed the authorisation of the closure of two production units at the Es Murterar power station in Alcudia. The units are therefore now scheduled to close down at the start of January 2020.
For the government, the partial closure is of the "most polluting" facility in the Balearics and is integral to its energy transition strategy; the plant is responsible for 27% of CO2 emissions in the Balearics.
Endesa is to present a plan by October for dismantling the two units; this work is expected to be completed within a four-year period. The Balearic Environment Commission will meanwhile start work next month on scheduling a reduction in the plant's operating hours. Until August 2021 there will be a maximum of 1,500 hours (annually); from August 2021, this is due to go down to 500 hours.
The closure of the other two units will follow once Red Electrica has completed the second electricity cable connection from the mainland. This is contained in the grid company's plan for 2020 to 2025. Complete closure of Es Murterar could therefore be by 2025, although 2027 has been mentioned as an alternative.
An agreement between Endesa and the national and regional governments should secure jobs for workers at the plant. There has as yet, however, not been any indication where these jobs might be.