Spain has officially announced its intention to shutter the country's nuclear plants by 2035, unveiling a comprehensive energy plan that encompasses extended deadlines for renewable initiatives and adjusted auctions for renewable projects.
The decommissioning process for the nuclear plants, slated to commence in 2027, comes with an estimated cost of approximately 20.2 billion euros ($22.4 billion). This financial commitment will be shouldered by a dedicated fund, bolstered by contributions from the operators of the nuclear plants, as outlined by the government.
During the recent electoral campaign, the fate of Spain's nuclear plants, responsible for generating around 20% of the nation's electricity, emerged as a contentious topic. The conservative opposition People's Party (PP) had previously pledged to reverse the planned phase-out, while business lobbies have advocated for the extended use of these plants.
In addition to the nuclear phase-out, the energy measures introduced encompass alterations to regulations governing the development of new green energy projects and adjustments to the structure of renewables auctions.
To facilitate new projects, the government has agreed to extend crucial administrative deadlines. For instance, the period to secure a building permit has been elongated by six months, now totaling 49 months.
Moreover, renewables auctions are set to undergo changes, with qualitative criteria being introduced to consider social and environmental standards. The Energy Ministry emphasized that this adjustment aims to “recognize the added value of European products.