Deloitte underlines wind's value to Spanish economy

SPAIN: The cost of Spanish wind power price subsidies 2005-2011 is €3 billion less than the cost of combined CO2 emission rights and fossil fuel imports (€12.1 billion), according to global consultancy firm Deloitte.

The figures are from Deloitte's annual report on the macroeconomic impact of Spanish wind power, presented this morning in Madrid.

In 2011 alone, wind avoided more than €1.9 billion of fuel imports and CO2, against €1.7 billion in subsidies. This does not include the sector's €113 million positive contribution to the fiscal balance.

National wind association AEE commissioned the first such report in 2009, and since then Deloitte has demonstrated each year how Spanish wind brings more to the economy than it takes out in power price subsidies.

Since the Spanish government froze new wind project authorisations in 2009, the sector has lost over 14,300 jobs, says Deloitte. It blames "political decisions" for the demise. The government has kept the lid on wind subsidies in order to reduce a €26 billion deficit across other areas of the electricity sector.

But unless the government lifts the lid, says Deloitte, the wind sector will lose out on around €27 billion of investments previously lined up to 2020, endangering 120,000 jobs.