The Spanish government has agreed to introduce urgent measures to save energy amid Russian invasion of Ukraine and the resulting growing threat energy crisis in Europe. The corresponding decision of the Cabinet of Ministers late on Monday evening, August 1, was announced by the country’s Minister for Environmental Transformations Teresa Ribera.
In particular, all public sector buildings, shopping and office centers, cinemas, hotels, train stations and airports in the country will be prohibited from setting thermostats below 27 ° C in summer or above 19 ° C in winter.
The measures set out in the royal decree, according to Ribera, should be introduced within a week-long transition period, which will begin immediately after the official publication of the document, and will be valid until November 1, 2023. They can be considered an initial package needed in a “critical situation,” the minister said, adding that Europe needs Spain’s help and “the time has come for solidarity.”
Turn off the lighting of shop windows and monuments at night
The document adopted by the Cabinet, among other things, obliges shops and enterprises to keep the doors closed using automatic systems, which should be installed everywhere by September 30. In addition, the lighting of unused offices, shop windows and monuments must be switched off after 10 pm, and energy efficiency checks must be carried out in selected buildings. Ribera urged private businesses to increase the amount of work from home.
These and other measures, which will be announced after the end of the summer holidays, Spain is taking to fulfill the obligations assumed under European gas emergency planagreed at the end of July. The country, in particular, will try to reduce gas consumption by 7%.
EU emergency plan for gas
According to the emergency gas plan adopted at an emergency meeting in Brussels on July 26, starting from August, EU countries are recommended to reduce gas consumption by 15 percent. The saved resource will have to be placed in underground storage facilities so that the EU member states have an adequate supply of fuel in the winter.
Initially Spain opposed the emergency plan, but in the end approved it, making concessions. In addition to Madrid, Portugal, Malta, Cyprus and Ireland have agreed on exceptions for themselves. These states are not required to comply with the overall gas savings of 15%, since they are either not connected to the European gas network at all or have not purchased Russian gas.