Es Murterar - expected to be fully decommissioned by 2027. | Efe

The Balearic government has increased its 2030 target for reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from 40% to 55%, while it has also set a slightly more ambitious target for the use of renewable energy - 40% rather than 35%.

The minister for energy transition, Juan Pedro Yllanes, says that "we want to be one of the first territories in Europe to decarbonise" and that the Balearic regulatory framework will be adapted in line with European regulations in order to "advance our decarbonisation".

Ministry data indicate that carbon dioxide emissions were reduced by 2,529 tonnes between 2015 and 2021. This was equivalent to the absorption of this gas by 600,000 trees. Over the same period, nitrogen oxide emissions were reduced by 5,851 tonnes, equivalent to those produced by all the cars on the Via Cintura in Palma for 20 years. There was also a reduction in the emission of sulphur oxides - 4,985 tonnes, equivalent to those produced by sixteen cruise ships over a one-year period.

In 2020, which wasn't a typical year because of lockdown, the Balearics emitted six million tonnes of CO2, of which over 70% corresponded to transport and to electricity generation. The data, the government says, show that although still far from the objectives, energy transition has begun to work, influenced by the closure of two production units at the Es Murterar coal-fired power station and limited operating hours for the other two.

Yllanes adds that "we are breaking records in terms of renewable energy generation, but we must be more efficient and reduce consumption". "We are intensifying the penetration of renewables, but we must also reduce electricity demand. And we need to get rid of fossil fuels not only to adapt to and mitigate climate change, but also for health reasons."