Around 17% of Spain’s total potential biogas production is concentrated in Castile and León
Today in Valladolid, the Director General of Quality and Environmental Sustainability in the Development and Environmental Council of the Regional Government of Castile and León, José Manuel Jiménez Blázquez, and the Director General of the Gas Natural Fenosa Foundation, Martí Solà, inaugurated the seminar Fifteen years of environmental quality in Castile and León, attended by nearly 100 professionals.
With this event, the Gas Natural Fenosa Foundation commemorated World Environment Day and the 15th anniversary of the seminars they have organised in various Autonomous Regions since 2001. The meeting analysed the progress made in Castile and León over the last 15 years in the management of natural spaces, sustainable building, environmentally friendly mobility, biogas and the use of water in agriculture.
In his talk, César R. Chamorro, professor of the Energy Engineering and Fluid Mechanics Department at the University of Valladolid and member of the TERMOCAL research group, recalled the importance of biogas as a fuel for reducing the country's energy dependency and contributing to the European Union's environmental goals.
Chamorro emphasised that Spain has the potential to produce nearly 1700 ktoe of biogas per year, the equivalent of 7% of the current consumption of natural gas. A potential in which the production capacity of Castile and León is outstanding, as thanks to the weight of agriculture, livestock farming and the food industry the region represents around 17% of Spain's total potential biogas.
Spain is among the EU countries collecting the least environmental tax
The director of PwC Spain's Economic team, Jordi Esteve, explained that environmental taxes should incentivise the use of better technology and the development of less polluting solutions. Esteve underlined that Spain is among the European Union countries with the lowest weight of environmental tax in its economy, ahead of only Iceland, Slovakia and Lithuania. In 2013, it collected 19.231 billion euros in environmental taxes, just 1.83% of GDP.
Felipe Bravo, Chair professor at the University of Valladolid, focused on the carbon sink effect of forests and their valuable contribution to mitigating the effects of climate change. The head of International Relations at Green Building Council España (GBCe), Emilio Miguel Mitre, presented the European project BUILD UPON, intended to drive design within a legislative framework which permits the implementation of energy efficiency measures to renew the existing buildings of 13 European countries. Mitre, the coordinator of the project, explained that from now until 2050 it is estimated that Spain should remodel at least 12 million homes.
The coordinator of Plan 2020 of the Castile and León Sugar Beet Growers' Association, AIMCRA, José Manuel Omaña, presented the main lines of this project, designed to promote the sustainable development of beet farming in the region. Omaña explained the techniques and systems used to improve energy and water efficiency, particularly the automation of irrigation according to the needs of the crop. Some improvements have achieved energy savings of 20% to 40%, and water saving of 10%.
The deputy director of Valladolid's CIDAUT Foundation, Francisco Tinaut, explained their main lines of research relating to sustainable mobility. Tinaut highlighted some European projects in which the CIDAUT Foundation participates, and recalled that in 2014 and 2015 the European Union has allocated over 700 million euros to research and development in smart, green and integrated transport as part of the Horizon 2020 programme. Tinaut emphasised that although the figures for the coming years are not yet approved, they are expected to continue along the same lines.
15th anniversary of the energy and environment seminars
The event in Valladolid commemorated Gas Natural Fenosa Foundation's 15 years organising seminars on energy and the environment, and therefore this seminar was partly a retrospective of some of the subjects discussed in different meetings elsewhere in Spain.
The Foundation held its first seminar in Valladolid on 17 January 2001, and since then has offered more than 200 seminars of this type all over Spain, attended by over 20,000 professionals. The meetings were organised by the Foundation in partnership with the Government of Spain and all the regional governments through their Environment and Energy Councils.
The Gas Natural Fenosa Foundation
The Gas Natural Fenosa Foundation, founded in 1992, targets its activity at the promotion of information, training and increased social awareness on improving energy efficiency and technological innovation in the field of energy while respecting and protecting the environment, and promotes cultural activities through the Gas Museum aimed at preserving and spreading knowledge about the historical and cultural heritage of the sector. It also has a programme to support exports for small and medium-sized enterprises. Its international operations take place in Algeria, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Mexico, Morocco, Italy and Moldova.
Valladolid (Spain), 05 Jun 2015