Presentation of the first International Summit of Renewable Energy
CAN is a summit dedicated to “Renewable Energies”, promoted by ACER. Its first edition was held in Santa Cruz de Tenerife between March 26th and 27th, 2015.
The main purpose is to open a calm and serious debate in relation to the necessity to combine development, renewable energy and knowledge.
At ACER, our objectives are, among others: training, dissemination and raising the awareness within our Society of the Canary Islands about the importance of using renewable energy, as well as to leading at a European level, in particular among the outermost regions, a change process towards a Society which is generating jobs and is more respectful to our environment.
At CAN presentations, round tables and debates are held, where our Society and, in particular, our youth may learn about new tendencies and schools of thoughts, about new entrepreneurial projects, etc.
The renewable energy is, without a doubt, one of the most outstanding successes of our country in the last decade. It has propelled us to the worldwide pole position in number of patents, over 400, both in wind as well as in solar energy. It has achieved that Spain is only second in this ranking, above countries like the US. Maturity of a young technology has been achieved, including important cost reductions. We have created a new market, improving our energy independence, reducing polluting emissions, and generating wealth and jobs.
All of this is a clear success of the knowledge Society, and, therefore, we should not obviate that the sector of renewables is UNSTOPPABLE, despite grave legislative counter-stones. One only has to watch what is happening in the rest of the world. As an example, 21% of the electricity produced on the Hawaii islands comes from renewables and they want to achieve a penetration of 75% in 2030 and 100% in 2040. Where are the targets for Europe’s outermost regions?
IT IS AN INVESTMENT, NOT AN EXPENSE
Please remember, renewable energy is an investment, not an expense. Once the investment has been written off we will have the cheapest energy and will propel the Society which has betted on it in an optimum position to compete, with lower costs for their companies and citizens. And we would like to highlight the positive externalities that these technologies represent: reduction of our polluting emissions, lower health costs, improved trade balance and an important argument favoring the image of our tourism and therefore achieve a differentiation compared to countries competing solely on price. And, finally, we have to mention the energy auto-sufficiency sought after for so long.
CAN2015. OMR AND EU
Today, we do an important step forward in our fight for putting the Canaries and the outermost regions OMR) in the best position to climbing in the worldwide ranking in terms of renewable energy. Today and tomorrow we will learn all from among the best and most qualified experts in the sector.
The CAN2015 has to mark a new step in the bet to introduce a higher penetration of renewable sources in the different energy mixes of the outermost regions, including self-consumption with net-metering. To try to cover up the sun with regulations does not make any sense. The sun has to be left alone, so it can shine to contribute to generating wealth and jobs for ALL. Doing the contrary just reflects a more than evident lack of vision.
A lot has been written about the importance of the OMR being cities and supported by the European Union. However, from my point of view, and talking about energy and renewables, today the most important thing is to stress the advantages that our insular regions, fragmented and far away from the continental territory, can contribute to the EU. The OMR, and in particular the Canary Islands, have a lot to offer. We have the best and most varied climatic conditions. Therefore, it is urgent that we unite and submit ourselves to an in-depth and clear analysis with the objective to differentiate ourselves from continental territories through European Directives.
It is obvious that our sector, renewable energy, can contribute to it in a fast and organized fashion. We will demonstrate again that the Malthusianism was wrong in its way to understand future fears and we will demonstrate that the renewable technology can generate new opportunities, provided that the public institutions legislate adequately. World economic history shows us, with varied examples and similar situations around the fear to change: the first industrial revolution, the personal computer, Internet, robotics…and, of course, renewable energy.
In my opinion, the vision of some of the Spanish public powers has been too shortsighted and malthusian. And this has motivated a disaffection and confusion which earnestly needs to be eradicated and re-directed. The renewable technologies have done their job, have reduced their costs and are currently absolutely competitive.
Enrique Rguez. de Azero Tabares
President of ACER, the Asociación Canaria de Energías Renovables