Spain to set up renewable energy research centre
Spain and Portugal will set up a joint renewable energy research centre, the leaders of both nations said Thursday.
ZAMORA—The Iberian Renewable Energy Centre in the southern Spanish city of Badajoz near the Portuguese border will help the two nations improve their expertise, Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Socrates said.
"This is absolutely essential for nations like Portugal and Spain since the reduction of our dependence on oil is strategic for our future," he said at a joint news conference with Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero.
The centre will be headed by Portugal's Antonio Sa da Costa, the current vice president of the European Renewable Energy Federation.
The socialist governments of both nations have made it a priority to boost spending on training and technology to make their economies more competitive.
Portugal, which is almost entirely dependent on imported energy, aims to collect 45 percent of its total power consumption from renewable sources like solar and wind power by 2010.
Spain aims to triple the amount of energy it derives from renewable sources by 2020. It is already among the three biggest producers of wind power in the European Union along with Germany and Denmark.