The cogeneration industry it’s on its last legs. Two out of three plants They have closed since the ‘Iberian exception’ was approved, since last June. It was not included in the same category as the combined cyclesthermal power plants that produce electricity with gas, and had to face a price of raw material that has multiplied by 400 in just one year.
But the President of the Government, Pedro Sánchez, has announced that one of the measures that they had been asking for for months will be approved so as not to have to close their plants: that they be included under the same conditions as the combined cycle plants in the ‘Iberian exception’. That is to say, that the gas they bought had its price ‘capped’ in the electricity market.
And this is what Sánchez said during his appearance in the Senate. “We are going to approve an exception for the cogeneration facilities of industries with large gas consumption, allowing them to be temporarily covered by the Iberian mechanism.”
[La cogeneración alerta de que ya se genera más electricidad con carbón mientras sus industrias caen un 60%]
ERTEs, stoppages and closures
“Two out of three plants are stopped and we need to be treated the same as combined cycle plants, although the reactivation of the industry will be 70-80% of the total,” he explains to EL ESPAÑOL-Invertia Javier RodriguezCEO of WELCOMEthe employers of the cogeneration industry.
“Cogeneration must opt for the same mechanism that combined cycles enjoy. It is denounced in the European Commission because it is not being fair.”
In addition, “a combined cycle consumes 30% more gas than cogeneration, so when we work we save a year and a half of energy from all public lighting,” says Rodríguez.
Cogeneration uses heat from industrial processes to produce electricity. It only produces electricity from that useful heat. Historically, cogeneration produces 10% of the country’s electricity, and is 15% of the industrial GDP in Spain.
The increase in gas costs has forced many installations to stop; nowadays, electricity production from cogeneration is 60% lower than normal.
To solve this problem, the Government has announced that it is processing a ministerial order to increase his regulated remuneration by more than 1,000 million. The public hearing period for the order to receive allegations has just closed.
On the other hand, considering the existence of this regulated regime, cogeneration does not receive the adjustment charged by gas plants with the application of the Iberian Mechanism; they only receive the wholesale electricity market matching price after applying the mechanism, which is much lower.
In this sense, the Government is going to modify the regulation of the cogeneration remuneration regimeallowing the installations that so wish to temporarily waive it, so that they can perceive the adjustment of the Iberian mechanism, like conventional gas plants.
This measure does not modify the regulation of the Iberian mechanism agreed with the European Commission and can increase the country’s gas savings, at a time when this is a priority to meet European objectives.
Cogeneration has been demanding the possibility of receiving the gas adjustment from the Iberian mechanism and Vice President Ribera anticipated that the measure was going to be applied at the meeting she held with the sectoral associations last Friday, September 2.
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