Success of the first solar energy summit organized by Energias Renovables

More than 300 people attended the solar energy summits held this week in Madrid. During the two days, numerous discussions among important solar stakeholders highlighted the current status of the solar industry so as the future prospects. Soon, all the presentations will be available at During the solar thermal day –21st of November– the speakers highlighted that the solar market in Spain is going through a change process, both in products and companies, and also the new challenges brought along by the new building code.

Juan Fernández San José, President of ASIT, reminded that the renewable energy plan is 4.9 m2 for 2010, which represents 4.2 new m2 in five years. During 2005, the installed capacity was 108,000 m2 and in 2006 some 150,000 m2 are expected, the industry should multiply its activity seven-fold.

The chance is difficult, still possible. Thanks to the building technical code, which calls for a 30% to 70% of domestic water and swimming pools through solar collectors. However solar thermal has another challenge ahead: ensuring that facilities are done properly and have a good maintenance system afterwards, as stated by most of the conference speakers.

The rise in home prices derived from the obligation to install solar energy was also mentioned in the summit. According to the estimates by Fernández San José, if every home had 2.14 m2 of solar collectors to meet the technical code requirements and an average price of 730 euros per m2, this regulation will mean an increase of 1,500 euros in the home price.

Good speed
As concerns solar PV, the most relevant aspects were the good position –fourth in the world market, 10,500 jobs created– and the good growth rate -duplicating capacity each 5 years-. According to Javier Anta, Presidente of ASIF, that sustained growth will allow to meet the goals proposed in the renewable energy plan (PER), at 400 MW by 2010.

As concerns retribution, which will be probably updated in a couple of weeks, Mr Anta said that the outlook is positive and it is even possible that the range of power with maximum pay is extended up to 10 MW. José María González Vélez, President of APPA, agreed with Mr Anta in this respect and called for the need of endorsements to avoid speculation in the solar industry.

Despite the good prospects, solar PV has some issues to tackle, which were also highlighted during the summit. Among them, to improve cell efficiency and make them popular among Architects and Developers; notwithstanding, the most important step ahead would be a public policy focusing not only on solar power but also on all renewable technologies, energy saving and efficiency.

The print issue of Energías Renovables will publish in December (n 53) several reports on the summits, supplemented by the latest figures on solar thermal and solar PV. Besides, all the presentations will be uploaded on our web very soon!.

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