The islands of Majorca and Ibiza pledge 100% renewable energy target by 2050

The government on the islands of Ibiza and Majorca have announced plans to be running on 100% renewable energy by 2050. The plans to implement a new climate change law would make the islands some of the cleanest areas in the world.

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The Balearics currently produce approximately 2% of their energy from renewables source, with a large extent coming from solar PV. At present, nearly three-quarters of the energy supplied to the Balearics is via a combination of coal-fired power plants, diesel generators, and gas plants. The remaining energy is then imported from the mainland. 

Under the newly proposed plans, the main coal plant operating at Alcudia on Majorca would be closed by 2025. This plan has currently been opposed by the Spanish energy ministry. The energy director of the Balearic islands, Joan Groizard has suggested that in order to achieve a target of moving completely to renewable energy would mean the islands would need to achieve 100% renewable electricity prior to 2050.

This would include substantial changes including the development of solar panels at parking facilities, and electrifying all vehicles operated by car hire companies.

With growing number of cars on the road and increasing levels of emissions, particularly in the summer means there is a challenge of creating a cleaner and more efficient way of traveling around the island. There are already new initiatives being launched to tackle this issue.

Electric vehicles are now becoming more commonplace and competitive on the island due to a successful initiative created by Endesa. In 2015, Endesa launched the ecaR project, installing six rapid charging stations across the island. Endesa claims the electric vehicles can reach any part of the island without any issues. All ecaR members are equipped with an app, allow to check and secure a charging slot directly from their phone. Endesa explains that over three-quarters of the battery can be charged within half an hour. The business is now partnering with various car rental companies across the island, allowing rental customers to be able to charge their vehicles without a charge.

Groizard believes the new climate law would highlight the islands as a low carbon destination and provide a good example of how other regions can transition towards a low carbon economy.

Researchers at the London School of Economics have suggested the 100% renewables by 2050 is a considerable target that is much higher than other nations. At present, the UK has pledged to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80% in comparison to 1990 levels by the year 2050.

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