Gas boilers star in the new battle between the electricity and gas sectors in Spain

Gas boilers star in the new battle between the electricity and gas sectors in Spain
Gas boilers star in the new battle between the electricity and gas sectors in Spain

The recent Building Efficiency Directive, published in the Official Journal of the European (OJEU), has unleashed an intense debate between the electricity and gas sectors in Spain. The reason? The interpretation and application of the provisions on the future of gas boilers in the country.

The electrical employers, Aelec assures that gas boilers will be prohibited from 2040 while The gas employer, Sedigas, denies this statement and indicates that this will not be the case as long as gases of renewable origin are used.

Sedigas points out that the directive only indicates the need to move towards the gradual elimination of independent boilers powered by fossil fuels. This is explicitly mentioned in its explanatory memorandum. Likewise, they highlight that article 13.7 “emphasizes the effort that Member States must make to replace these fossil fuel boilers in line with their national phase-out plans.”

In summary, “at no time does it mention the term ‘gas boilers’ because the technology cannot be confused with the fuel used. This is the key to the debate. Renewable gas solutions are already a reality that They can be used because they are 100% compatible with current equipment, as in the case of biomethane and renewable hydrogen,” employers’ sources explain to El Periódico de la Energía.

Opposite position

For its part, the Association of Electrical Energy Companies (Aelec) positively values ​​the Building Efficiency Directive, since “it represents a step forward towards the objective of decarbonization and reduction of fossil fuel consumption throughout the European Union.” According to the electrical employers’ association, this directive “prohibits the use of fossil fuels for heating and cooling in the residential sector in 2040” and, in addition, “prevents giving incentives for the installation of fossil boilers starting next year.”

“A great step has been taken in Europe’s energy transition, since this Directive increases the ambition compared to the current Directive, promoting the electrification of buildings, placing limits on the growth of fossil boilers and valuing renewable energies through district heating and cooling networks, in line with Spain’s decarbonization objectives,” added Marina Serrano, president of aelēc, in a statement.

Furthermore, the president of the electricity association added that “this new legislative text defines zero-emission buildings as an efficient building construction with zero or very low primary energy consumption, which does not generate on-site fossil fuel emissions and generates very low operating emissions. To do this, the energy must come from renewable sources of self-consumption, local self-consumption, energy communities or renewable energies from the electrical grid.”

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