Spain: 30M€ aid for energy improvements on farms

The national government has approved the aid program for energy efficiency actions on agricultural holdings, allocating a budget of 30 M€. The aid will cover up to 30% of the project cost. Eligible actions will have to achieve a 10% reduction in the final energy consumption.

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This aid program will promote energy savings and thus improve the competitiveness of the sector. The 30 M€ will also focus on the use of renewable energies and the reduction of CO2 emissions. The aid will cover up to 30% of the cost necessary for the implementation of the project. The investments supported will contribute to the generation of employment and economic activity, key to the recovery from the COVID-19 crisis.

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Following the official publication of this program, regional governments will have to approve and publish their call for proposals and designate the competent body for the process of granting aid. The program will be in force from the day after its publication until 31 December 2021.

Subsidies will be allocated directly on a first-come, first-served basis following the calls for proposals established by the regions.

At the press conference following the approval of the program, the government spokeswoman pointed out that 20 million would be for individual farms or cooperatives and the remaining 10 million would be for irrigated lands.

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Actions focused on energy savings

(1) Among the subsidized actions stand out those focused on improving the energy efficiency of irrigation facilities such as:

  • The replacement of pumping units with more energy-efficient ones.
  • The implementation of frequency variators and static starters or the replacement of pumping units with more energy-efficient equipment.
  • The implementation or modernization of regulation, control and monitoring systems for the irrigation network that contribute directly to energy savings.
  • The installation or replacement of capacitor banks to improve the energy efficiency of the electrical installations of pumping stations.
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Actions that contribute to an increase in water consumption or irrigable area will not be eligible.

(2) Actions contributing to the improvement of energy efficiency and the use of thermal renewable energies in agricultural holdings will also be eligible, such as:

  • Actions on the thermal envelope that reduce the heating and cooling demand of agricultural buildings, including bioclimatic solutions.
  • Actions in thermal installations for heating, cooling, ventilation and domestic hot water, such as those for pasteurization processes and preservation of perishable products, air conditioning of livestock buildings and greenhouses, refrigeration in wine fermentation processes, etc.
  • Improvement of the energy efficiency of generation, distribution, regulation and control subsystems and terminal elements of thermal installations, including the use of waste heat and new heat networks.
  • Replacement of conventional energy in thermal installations by renewable thermal energies (solar thermal, biomass, geothermal energy, ambient energy (aerothermal or hydrothermal), heat pumps or a combination of these). The replacement of a thermal generator with a fossil fuel generator will not be considered eligible.
  • Refurbishment or replacement of indoor lighting and outdoor lighting installations.
  • Renewal of engines for mechanical drives and other services specific to these activities.
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Eligibility requirements

For a project to be eligible, it must:

  • Achieve and justify a reduction in final energy consumption of 10% compared to its baseline situation.
  • Justify the final energy savings using one of the calculation methods in Annex V of Directive 2012/27/EU of 25 October 2012 and according to Commission Recommendation (EU) 2019/1658 of 25 September 2019.

Budget breakdown by regions

The budget breakdown by region corresponds to the distribution of agricultural holdings and irrigated land in the different territories. It is an initial allocation, which may be extended in cases where the initial budget is exhausted in any region, subject to budget availability. The initial allocation is set out below:

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Source: Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food