Spain Receives €869 Million for Just Climate Transition
- The country is on track to phase out coal ahead of its initial planned target of 2030
- Just Transition Fund will invest in energy efficiency, circular economy, renewable energy sources and the green transformation of Spain’s industries
- JTF will pay special attention to the training and reskilling of unemployed persons, SME staff and workers in carbon-intensive industries
Spain will receive almost €869 million from the Just Transition Fund (JTF) following the adoption of the Just Transition Programme and its Territorial Just Transition Plan (TJTP). The funding will help the country firmly advance in the transition towards a climate-neutral economy in a fair way.
Spain is on track to phase out coal for energy production ahead of its initial planning of 2030. The EU will help deliver a just climate transition in the regions affected by the corresponding closures of coal mines and coal power plants. This includes most notably the region of Asturias, which will receive almost one third of the Spanish JTF funding. Other regions receiving funds are the province of A Coruña in Galicia, the provinces of Teruel in Aragón, León, and Palencia in Castilla y León, Almería, Cádiz, and Córdoba in Andalusia; and a group of municipalities around Alcúdia on the island of Mallorca.
Fostering economic resilience, renewable energy, and jobs
The JTF will invest in energy efficiency, circular economy, renewable energy sources (e.g., solar, offshore wind, renewable hydrogen), and the green transformation of the country’s industry in those concerned areas. The Fund will finance a hub for technological innovation in offshore renewable energy and energy storage in A Coruña, support the renovation of public buildings in León to improve their energy performance; and promote an innovative project using microalgae to produce renewable fuels in Cádiz.
In addition, financial assistance will be provided to SMEs and projects that lead to economic diversification, targeting sectors that are considered strategic for these territories. For instance, the JTF will support SMEs in the agri-food industry in Córdoba, in particular in the municipalities affected by the closure of a coal power plant in the Guadiato Valley district. It will also support the Alcúdia Tech Mar initiative, which aims to reconvert the area around the local thermal power plant creating new opportunities for SMEs and spear-heading innovation in the maritime and aquaculture industry. Investments will also focus on incubator services for 160 SMEs and new process or product innovation for 90 SMEs.
See related article: EU Cohesion Policy: €37.3 Billion for Spain to Support its Green Transition and a Fair and Competitive Economy
Image: Coal mine, Teruel, Spain. Source: Jennifer Woodard Maderazo, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons
Finally, the JTF will pay special attention to the training and reskilling of unemployed persons, SME staff and workers in carbon-intensive industries, developing the qualifications needed for a sustainable development of the territories and for workers to find well-paid jobs. Tailored apprenticeships will foster job creation for young people between 18 and 29 years. Overall, 6,000 jobs are expected to be created in entities supported with the JTF.
Promoting sustainable economic development of territories
The JTF will help develop solutions and new technologies that provide new economic activities for the territories affected by the transition. For example, in the region of Asturias, the JTF will support an innovation hub for artificial intelligence in a former mining site.
Several regions will develop projects fostering sustainable and cultural tourism as well as the conservation of the ethnographic heritage. In Teruel, the JTF will support the rehabilitation of mining and industrial heritage sites for cultural activities, honouring the legacy of mining municipalities; and in Palencia, in the municipality of Cervera de Pisuerga, a youth hostel will be rehabilitated with EU funding to help create permanent employment.
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