With an average of 340 days of sunshine a year in Spain, solar is more reliable than wind, and can go a long way towards weaning the country off gas-fired and ageing nuclear power stations. Spain is now the fourth largest manufacturer of solar power technology in the world and both solar and wind power technology exports have become valuable earners in a country with a weak manufacturing.
SHOOT: South Africa needs to start participating in the renewable energy game. Where are our wind turbines, solar farms, nuclear facilities? We've been sleeping hence the problems with Eskom. Time to play catch up now.
With the new La Florida plant, the nation's solar power production is now equivalent to output of a nuclear power station
Spain has opened the world's largest solar power station, meaning that it overtakes the US as the biggest solar generator in the world. The nation's total solar power production is now equivalent to the output of a nuclear power station.
Spain is a world leader in renewable energies and has long been a producer of hydro-electricity (only China and the US have built more dams). It also has a highly developed wind power sector which, like solar power, has received generous government subsidies.
Protermosolar, the association that represents the solar energy sector, says that within a year another 600MW will have come on-stream and projects that by 2013 solar capacity will have reached 2,500MW.