Province of Ávila, Castilla Y León, Spain

Keywords: renewable energy region, 100% renewable energy self sufficiency region, Province of Ávila, renewable energy in Province of Ávila.

Ávila is a province of central-western Spain, in the southern part of the autonomous community of Castilla Y León (Figure 1). It is bordered by:[1]

  • south: the province of Toledo and Cáceres
  • west: the province of Salamanca
  • north: the province of Valladolid
  • east: the province of Segovia and Madrid Region

Its capital is Ávila.[1] This province has a population of around 168,000 inhabitants and consists of 248 municipalities.[2]

 

Energy Agency of the province of Ávila

 

The main objective of the Energy Agency of the Province of Ávila (APEA) in Spain is to improve energy efficiency (RUE), and promote the use of renewable energy sources(RES).

This agency is created in 2001 and located in Ávila, Spain.

Contribution of the agency are development and enhancement of the county council competitiveness, improvement the quality of citizens life, environmental conservation and improvement.

Bioerregn Floresta Project

The project title is “Potentialities Evaluation of Renewable Resources: Atlas of the Forest Residues and Applications of the Biomass inside the Atlantic Space.” Project priorities:[4]

  • The promotion of exchanges of agricultural and forestry respectful practices with the environment.
  • The promotion of renewable energies inside of the Atlantic area.
  • The development of environmental technologies.
  • The valuation and use of forest residues for its energetic exploitation in identified regions.

Action Plan for the Region of Ávila

Three Sectors with the Greatest Consumption of Energy

There are three sectors belongs to the rural zone as well as the city of Ávila with the greatest consumption of energy. They are:

  • Municipality of the province of Ávila. The province of Ávila is a rural zone where the domestic and agriculture sectors are the main energy customers. The area of the target of reduction of energy consumption and implementation of renewable energies are: town halls, street lighting in most of the villages, and public building.
  • Rural Tourism Housing. The are around 300 Rural Tourism Housing in the province of Ávila. This province is one of the Spanish regions with major number of houses of this type. Tourism is a strong point of the economy of Ávila. It is expected the growing of this sector in the next years.
  • National Police Academy: it is located in the city of Ávila, the National Police Academy is the biggest Police Academy of Europe. With more than 5.000 people, the Academy is a huge energy consumer where there is no RES system installed in the buildings.

Aim

The main objective of the Action Plan for the region of Avila is the reduction of energy consumption and greenhouses gases towards sustainable levels by means of formation and divulgation activities about RES and saving and energy efficiency in order to address province of Ávila towards the sustainability and the fulfillment of Kyoto Protocol.[2]

Objectives

The objectives of the action plan are:

 

  • An energy use of native resources that allows a decrease in the fossil fuels dependence.
  • An improvement in the energy situation of the province.
  • A suitable management of the forests and the agricultural lands that diminish the
    propagation of plagues and fires and stop erosion.
  • The development of rural zones with new activities and jobs that avoids the
    movement of the population.
  • New investment possibilities in the municipalities thanks to a bill reduction.
  • Competitiveness improvement of rural tourism companies.

Baseline and Targets

Baseline and targets of the action are:

 

  • Energy consumption reduction.
  • CO2 emissions reduction.
  • A large number of RES installations.
  • Several activities in Saving and Energy Efficiency matters.
  • Several activities in renewable energy sources.
  • An economic save for the implementation of Saving and Efficiency measures.

Organizational Structure for the Plan as a Whole

The Action Plan is supported by the European Project Innovative Thinking financed by the European Commission through the Intelligent Energy for Europe Programme. The City Council of Ávila (through the Energy Agency of the Province of Ávila) will coordinate together with the Technological Center CARTIF (located in Boecillo, Valladolid) the whole of measures considered in the present Action Plan.[2]

Communication Strategy

The communication strategy will be specified according to each of the parts implied in the project.[2]

  • In relation to the City Councils: the town council managers (politicians and municipal technicians) will be informed and formed on the economic saving, renewable systems and energy saving measures to apply in municipal projects; the citizens will be informed through the managers or through the Innovative Thinking Project web on the measures to adopt.
  • Both owners and users of Rural Houses will be informed about the non conventional energies and about the measures of saving and energy efficiency.
  • The communication with the National Police Academy will be established via the managers of the centre. The contact will be maintained to inform of the new financial possibilities.

Action
Municipality of the province of Ávila

Formation and information will be provided to town council technicians and their superiors so that they are familiar with the possibilities technology offers in this field. The activities to be carried out are:[2]

  • A seminar about save and energy efficiency in the municipalities, focused on actions in public buildings and public lighting.
  • A course about the possibilities of the biomass to the municipalities, regarding to the thermic and electric use of biomass, the use as fuel in transport and the exploitation of biomass to obtain raw material.
  • Interchange of experiences between stakeholders of several European regions.

The information activities will focus on the promulgation of energy efficiency and save and RES:[2]

  • Guides about Energy Efficiency in the Lighting for Council Towns.
  • Brochures about grants for the Saving and the Efficiency Energy and the RES Installations are going to be designed and printed.
  • Assessment Report: some of the most promising investment possibilities will be assessed and used as demonstration projects for implanting in other regions.

Rural Tourism Housing

The measures for saving and efficiency energy are focussed on two aspects of the activity: the construction of the house and the use of the house with environmental respect and energy saving by the users. Several formation and information activities will be carried out in the rural tourism

sector:

Formation (to the owners of the tourism rural houses): a course about the possibilities of biomass in these houses; a seminar about energy efficiency and saving in the construction and the use of these houses.

  • Information: a brochure with grants information; posters with practical advices about rational energy use in lighting, climatization, and use of electric.

National Police Academy

To achieve the installations of saving systems and renewable energy sources, some activities will be carried out:

All the measures considered will overcome the European and national law. Calculations using the specific software (CALENER) will be carried out for the most unfavorable design. There are agreements among the stakeholders in order to assure the implementation of the selected measures, technologies

  • A brochure will be delivered to the responsible staff and an assessment about the installations of saving systems and renewable energy sources.
  • The National Police Academy staff will be invited to taking part in the courses and seminars of the project.

Energy Efficiency Improvement and Promotion of Clean Energy

Project Description

The site is located in the north of the city of Avila, in the municipality of Sanchidrián, in a former agricultural land (Figure 2). The projected development plan includes a private new golf course and four different types of residential houses, in total 870.000 m

 

At the first stage of this plan, 48 new dwellings will be built during the next 1 or 2 years. The building programme in the whole area consists of 100% private housing, with a proposal for building up to 800 houses, hotels and other buildings within the urban site during the next 8 years. The area will consists mainly of detached dwellings (> 80%) and semi-detached houses (around 16%). Many of these houses are expected to be used as holiday homes, although it could be possible that it will be more a residential area with people commuting everyday to work in the nearby cities (Ávila, Arévalo, Madrid, etc.).

Aim

The project aims to increase the energy efficiency of the project as well as to promote the use of renewable and clean energy sources in buildings and urban area.

Status

Currently the project is at initiation/design stage and it is expected to start by 2009’s end.

Stakeholders

The main stakeholders identified are:

  • The municipality: Sanchidrian Town Council
  • Builder- promoter of the urbanization
  • Future owners of the housings
  • Other District Councils and local authorities in the province of Ávila
  • Several Professional Associations: Architects, Builders and Engineers.

Laws and Existing Politics

Most of Spain’s policies are directed toward convergence with the EU and increasing economic development. The rules has to be linked with the 2002/91/CE Directive on the energy performance of buildings, with are specified in:

  • The Technical building code (CTE, Royal Decree 314/2006);
  • The Regulation for Thermal Installations in Buildings (RITE, Royal Decree 1027/2007);
  • Energy Certification of Buildings (Royal Decree 47/2007);
  • The energy efficiency of outdoor lighting, RD 1890/2008 of 14th November.

In Spain, it has been created an Energy Efficiency Label, on a scale A-G. A is the lowest energy consumption band.

Energy Qualification of the Buildings

According to Energy Efficiency Label in Spain, all the new buildings in the project have obtained the lower energy qualification, “E”.

Ambitions

The energy efficiency of the houses will be improved around 30% (beyond their current design situation) or more. The improvement in the energy performance coefficient (EPC) of the buildings can be translated into a lower energy efficiency band (B or better). The energy consumption will be reduced around 20% compared with the usual installations.

Project Implementation

Preliminary Results

The building simulation is as followed (Figure 3):

Based on the building simulation, the results are:

  • Improve the thermal layer: change the glass, change the polystyrene insulation, Increase the thickness of the roof’s insulation. It will reduce the heating demand in a 30%.
  • Improve the heating equipment and heat distribution systems: change the radiators, change the standard heaters. It will reduce the heating demand in a 28%.
  • Change of conventional fuel boilers: use biomass heater (widely available in the area). It will reduce the heating demand in a 28%.

Biodiesel

In 2008, with the incorporation of the La Moraña Service Station (located in the municipal district of Hernansancho), the number of service stations that sell biodiesel stands at eight.

In the last two years (2007 – 2009), sale of biodiesel has been increased over 50% in the province of Ávila. This number of sale is still very low compared to the total of fuel sold.

Solar Energy

Photovoltaic solar energy is still promoted in the province of Ávila. The agency from the province put in contact companies of renewable energies with Ávila towns so that solar orchards can be installed in their municipalities. Some Ávila localities have found an alternative to maintain and attract the population. For example the council of Gotarrendura already put into operation a solar orchard with 1.4 MW. In December (2009) it will be finalized to put another orchard with 2 MW. Even the installation is expensive, in mid term, solar orchards are profitable. Considering the yield of this type of projects, the Town hall of the province of Avila promotes a new work that will facilitate the creation of a job spot. “The idea came to us to install photovoltaic panels in the new shelter that is being constructed. This panels will generate profits of 3,000 euros more or less and a job for its maintenance will be created”, said Fernando Martin (the mayor of Gotarrendura).[9]