Spain reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 5% this year

Spain is making progress in its fight against climate change, according to the latest report prepared by the Sustainability Observatory (OS), an association that ensures compliance with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the 2030 Agenda and other initiatives that ensure an environmentally-based future. On sustainability.

The organization indicates in its conclusions that in 2023, greenhouse gas emissions decreased by 5.3% compared to the previous year. When compared to data obtained in 1990 (the first with records), it is 3.3% lower and 36.6% lower than in 2005, the year with the worst data recorded in the past three decades.

The report’s authors believe that the reduction achieved this year “represents the appropriate trend” to reach the goals of the 2030 Climate Change Act. However, they warn that the pace of carbon removal must increase and reduce by at least 7.5% each year.

Sustainable future

Weight of renewable energies

the report Evolution of greenhouse gas emissions in Spain (1990-2023) shows an uneven transformation. After declining in 2018, 2019 and 2020, emissions rose again in 2021 and 2022, only to decline in 2023.


Evolution of greenhouse gas emissions

Annual variation of CO2 emissions in Spain 1990-2023

(Forecast December 2023)

Source: *Edited by J. Santamarta / Sustainability Observatory. Vanguard

Evolution of greenhouse gas emissions

Annual variation of CO2 emissions in Spain 1990-2023 (projected December 2023)

Source: *Edited by J. Santamarta / Sustainability Observatory. Vanguard

Evolution of greenhouse gas emissions

Annual variation of CO2 emissions in Spain 1990-2023

(Forecast December 2023)

Source: J.Santamarta estimates / Sustainability Observatory. Vanguard

If the data is confirmed, the operating system believes it will represent the largest drop “along with the crisis unleashed by the Corona virus, which represented the largest drop in emissions in 2020.”


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Lead author, economist and head of the OS Climate Change Department, José Santamarta, attributes this decline to the increase in hydraulics and the increased penetration of renewable energy sources, especially photovoltaics. In addition, he adds, “The increase in gas could decrease if the storage capacity increases with pumping, especially solar thermal energy.”

Hydropower production grew by 43%, pumped water by 41%, wind power production grew by 3.8%, and photovoltaic power by 33%. They add that wind energy alone prevented the emission of 30 million tons of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2023. In addition, according to the report’s data, oil consumption decreased by 2.1% compared to the previous year, and natural gas consumption decreased by 13.4%.

Although the authors of this report suggest that progress is being made in the right direction, they call for removing gas from the equation as quickly as possible, unleashing and increasing investments in solar thermal energy, reducing intensive livestock farming, and encouraging self-consumption until… 12:00. At least 20 GW and massive implementation of renewable photovoltaics are being installed in areas that have no environmental value such as artificial areas, parking lots or landfills.


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Moreover, they state, “the great opportunity provided by next generation money must be exploited to finally decarbonize the economy and allow a green, low-carbon recovery.”

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