Madrid, 9 February 2012. Wind turbine manufacturing companies present in Spain warn that if the wind moratorium established in Royal Decree 1/2012 is extended, the industry is at risk of disappearing from the country. Therefore, the companies in the manufacturer»™s Working Group of the Asociación Empresarial eólica (AEE) (Spanish Wind Energy Association) are asking the Government for signs about the future, in the shape of a new stable regulatory framework, to end with the uncertainty that has already lasted more than two years, with the resulting drop in production, loss of employment and leaving to settle in other countries.
Manufacturers warn that the workload of the industry reaches barely half its productive capacity. Given that wind turbines are ordered from the factory 1.5 to two years before the instalóation of a wind farm begins and that there is no regulatory framework beyond 31st December 2012, so far this year there have been no new orders for turbines for the domestic market. This is added to the fact that in 2011 orders were for less than 100 MW and in 2010, for 220 MW, compared to an average of over 1,500 MW in previous years (see chart).
The wind industry, which employs about 30,000 people, has lost over ten thousand jobs in recent years due to uncertainty. It warns that its situation is already unsustainable and requestá the Government to bear in mind when regulating that the wind industry has created an industrial fabric around it with companies throughout the supply chain «“from large manufacturers to small suppliers-, exports technology for over 2 billion Euros a year, investá around 150 million Euros a year in R&D and has positioned Spain as the fourth country in the world in wind patents.
Manufacturers stress that the Government cannot lose sight of the fact that Spain needs wind energy to progress in its energy independence in view of the expected increase in the price of fossil fuels and to meet the binding targets of the European Directive on renewable energy, since it is the most advanced technology among renewables. The problem is that if the wind industry is brought to a halt now, just a few years before becoming competitive without incentives, if the Government wants to reactivate it later on, the national know-how will have been lost, along with one of the few sectors in which Spain is an undisputed world leader.
The wind sector understands the difficult economic situation being experienced by Spain and has repeatedly shown its willingness to make sacrifices. However, it considers that it is not responsible for the tariff deficit «“its contribution in 2011 was zero-, and that therefore the solution can in no way involve the destruction of the industry and its 30,000 jobs. Therefore, it urgently requestá a sustainable regulation of the economy that ensures the survival of a key sector for Spanish economy.