Spanish Supreme Court to rule on government renewables decision

The Spanish Supreme Court has cast doubt on the legality of government cuts to the countries renewable power Spanish Supreme Court sector, saying it could violate the principles of legal certainty and legitimate expectations enshrined in the Constitution.

Just before Christmas the Third Chamber of the Supreme Court issued a ruling in which the legality of the legislative changes introduced by the Ministry of Industry, Energy and Tourism was questioned.

Their findings have opened up the path for the case to be brought before Spain’s Constitutional Court.

On the same day the Constitutional Court ratified the principles of the new remuneration system for renewable energies in setting aside the constitutional challenge brought by the Government of the Region of Murcia.

Over 400 appeals were launched by Spanish companies following the PP’s 2013 reforms, which included a €1.7bn cut to renewable energy. Thirty foreign companies also contested the cuts.

It remains to be seen if a decision going against the government would have some sort of impact on similar situations around the rest of the EU.

Sonia Dunlop, spokesperson for the Solar Trade Association in the UK told Power Engineering International: “This ruling by the Spanish supreme court will not have any direct knock on impact on the situation regarding the changes to the Feed-in Tariffs in the UK, as these are two separate legal systems. However the general principle of not making retrospective changes to the law is of course a central tenet of any legal system.”

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