Government rectifies fossil fuel vehicles ban

fossil fuel vehicles

The government of Pedro Sanchez has rectified its intention to establish a ban on fossil fuel vehicles in 2050, as well as a ban on the sales of these vehicles as of 2040.

This according to statements made by Minister of Energy Transition Teresa Ribera with regards to the draft Law for Climate Change and Energy Transition approved at the Council of Ministers. This legal document eliminated the expected bans.

At first, the document was expected to include the ban on gasoline, diesel, hybrid, and gas powered vehicle sales for 2040, as well as banning their use as of 2050. However, Ribera has confirmed that these measures are not in the text. Instead, it contains the words of the European Commission verbatim.

Announcement from the Council of Ministers

The Council of Ministers approved the proposal made by the Minister for Ecological Transition (MITECO) to refer the draft of the National Comprehensive Energy and Climate Plan 2021-2030 (PNIEC) to the European Commission.

This text defines the nation’s objectives to lower greenhouse gases (GHG), incorporating renewable energies, and implementing energy efficiency measures, among other matters. All member states must hand in this instrument so that the European Union can make a plan to meet their climate change goals and targets pledged under the Paris Agreement.

The main results foreseen in the PNIEC are:

  • Reducing GHG by 21 percent from 1990s levels. In late 2017, Spain was 18 percentage points above this reference value.
  • 42 percent renewables energy share. When it comes to electricity generation, it should stand at 74 percent by 2030.
  • The country’s energy efficiency will improve by 39.6 percent.

No explicit ban for fossil fuel vehicles

The mobility and transportation sector is set to reduce emissions by 28 tons of CO2 equivalent between 2021 and 2030. The main force driving this result will be the modal shift. According to the plan, 35 percent of the passenger-kilometers covered by conventional vehicles nowadays will be covered by other non-pollutant means such as public transportation, bicycles, walking, etc.

Renewable penetration is set to reach 22 percent in the transportation sector by 2030 thanks to the incorporation of five million electric vehicles (cars, vans, motorcycles…); accounting for approximately 16 percent of the automobiles in circulation by 2030, according to the models implemented in Spain’s National Comprehensive Energy and Climate Plan, which also includes the use of advanced biofuels.

Renewable boost

The boost to renewable energies over the coming decade is one of the main elements to achieving the goals set in the PNIEC.

By 2030, the total power capacity installed in the electricity sector is estimated to reach 157 GW, of which 50 GW will correspond to wind power, 37 GW to solar PH power; 27 GW to combined gas cycles, 16 GW to hydroelectric, 8 GW to pumping; 7 GW to thermosolar power, and 3 GW to nuclear, with the remaining coming from an assortment of other sources.

When it comes to energy storage, pumping technologies and cell batteries are at the lead, with an additional capacity of 6 GW, providing higher energy management capacity.

Emissions reduction

The measures contemplated in the PNIEC will allow going from the 340.2 million tons of CO2 equivalent (MtCO2-eq) issued in 2017 to 226 MtCO2-eq in 2030.

Therefore, at the end of the decade, emissions will decrease by one in every three tons.

The electricity generation sector will have the highest percentage of emissions reduction, going down by 44 MtCO2-eq between 2021 and 2030; followed by the transportation sector, responsible for 26 percent of CO2 emissions in 2017, which will lower by 28 MtCO2-eq during the same period.

Energy efficiency

The implementation of the PNIEC measures will see energy efficiency increase by 39.6 percent in 2030.

Similarly, the economy’s primary energy intensity will improve by 3.6 percent in 2021-2030. This indicator measures the relation between energy consumption or demand and the GDP.

In this sense, the proposed measures prioritize the rehabilitation of the existing infrastructure, in line with the goals of the Spanish Urban Agenda. Said targets also include the fight against energy poverty and improving accessibility.

For more information, check Energía16

See also: Spain to invest €47 billion to face climate change and undertaking the energy transition

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