100% renewable energy in Ibiza and Formentera is achievable. We enjoy around 3000 hours or 300 days of quality sunshine every year.
Currently less than 1% of our energy comes from renewable sources. The remaining 99% comes from burning imported oil and gas. This is unstainable, inefficient and environmentally damaging.
Our energy consumption is also increasing. In 2000 Ibiza consumed 511 gigawatt-hours a year, and in 2014 it was 850 gigawatt-hours. To meet this demand, the power plant in Ibiza town has increased its capacity from 170 megawatts to 385 megawatts.
As islands, Ibiza and Formentera are also vulnerable to security of supply issues and exposed to higher prices.
By harnessing solar, and with the right mix of applications and technologies, we can achieve a clean, sustainable and independent energy future.
Energy independence through solar
Rooftop solar alone can cover a high percentage of our electricity needs. This was shown in a plan on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency produced by the Balearic Islands Government.
With rooftop solar and solar farms in areas of low landscape value, we can meet 100% of the islands’ electricity needs.
Communities can share resources and produce energy in the quantities they need. And because it’s produced locally, not shipped and piped in from thousands of kilometres away, there’s less waste and greater efficiencies.
New and emerging technologies in battery storage solutions, as well as improvements in the efficiency of panels, will optimise solar installations and make energy independence cheaper and easier.
Solar energy will also remove the need for power pylons and cables that impact our landscape, and strengthen our position to stop oil and gas exploration in the Mediterranean Sea.
What you can do
Change to a renewable energy supplier
Join a green energy supplier like SOM Energia, who generate renewable energy to offset the electricity you consume. An ideal option if you’re renting or your roof isn’t suitable for solar. No technical change is needed – simply swap your supplier online in 10 minutes.
Install solar panels and stay connected to the grid
Use the sun on your roof to sustainably power your home with photovoltaic (PV) panels. It will reduce your electricity bills because you only use energy from the grid when you need it, for example at night, and you can feed into the grid when you have excess supply.
Note: In 2015, Spain’s central government introduced taxes on solar energy that includes energy produced for personal consumption (for installations larger than 10 kW). At present, to avoid this tax you need to disconnect completely from the grid.
Go off grid and become totally energy independent
Install enough renewable energy and storage capacity to meet your needs and disconnect from your electricity supplier. It can pay for itself in less than 10 years, protects you from supply issues and price rises, and is a great option for remote and rural houses as there’s no grid connection fee.
Apply for government grants
Grants and subsidies are available from the Balearic Islands Government for home and business solar installations. Cambio Energetico has useful information on these and application due dates.
Connect with local renewable energy experts
Amics de la Terra Eivissa (Friends of the Earth) work to promote renewable energy in Ibiza and Formentera.
Visit www.amics-terra.org for information and advice.
Contact local solar energy installation companies. See list of suppliers.
Watch our documentary
With our support, BioCam has produced a thought-provoking documentary, ‘Ibiza and Formentera – 100% Renewable’. It
outlines the current situation and the barriers we need to overcome to achieve this goal. (Spanish with English subtitles)
More often than not energy is wasted not used. Using energy more efficiently is as important as using renewable sources.
Simple changes and additions can make your home healthier and more comfortable to live in year-round. As well as being better for you, you’ll reduce your emissions and save money.
New and improved technologies can make your home high preforming, so using less energy doesn’t mean going without.
What you can do
Replace lights with LEDs
- LEDs are around 80-90% more efficient than incandescent lights
- LED bulbs omit no heat and are durable and versatile
- They can last for up to 50,000 hours, compared to 1,500 hours of other bulbs, so you’ll change them less frequently
Only buy energy-efficient appliances
- When replacing, install appliances with an A+ rating or higher – they use less energy and resources like water
- High-preforming appliances can cost a little more to buy but will save you money in the long run
Install a solar hot water system
- Around 1/3 of household energy goes towards heating water
- Use the sun to heat your water instead of burning gas and oil
- Systems are easy to install and it will cut your electricity bills
Install an induction cooktop
- Cooking with gas emits unhealthy waste gases, heats your kitchen, adds moisture and can be dangerous
- Induction cooking, which uses electricity to produce magnetic fields, is fast, precise and consistent
- Induction cooktops are efficient, easy to install, clean and safer than gas and ceramic ones
Double and triple glaze windows
- Double and triple-glazed windows reduce heat gain in summer and loss in winter by over 50% compared to single-glazed windows
- With better glazing, you can use less artificial cooling and heating and reduce your energy bills by 40-70%
- It decreases ultraviolet radiation that contributes to skin cell damage and fades furniture, and reduces condensation that causes mould
- The glass is thicker and stronger so it is safer and makes your home quieter and more secure
Properly insulate and ventilate your home
- Poorly insulated homes gain heat in the summer and lose warmth in the winter
- Make sure your roof, walls and underfloor are well insulated
- Fix leaks of hot and cold air around windows, doors and fireplaces
- Install good ventilation systems that maintain the flow of fresh air and remove moisture
Monitor and control energy
- Install a smart meter to monitor use and improve your energy efficiency
- Intelligent systems manage your energy, like the ones from Spanish company Ampere Energy that predict usage and recommend options
- They are perfect partners for solar systems because you’ll know how and when your energy is used
Other energy saving tips
- Unplug appliances and chargers when not in use as they continue to consume energy
- Use ceiling fans in summer and winter (in reverse) – they use as much energy as a lightbulb
- Keep your freezer full so it runs more efficiently
- Install motion sensor lights
- Buy an insulation cover for your hot water cylinder
- Plant trees on the sunny side of your house to provide shade.
The Australian think-tank, Beyond Zero Emissions, has an excellent website on energy freedom with advice on how to make your home high-performing and zero emissions.