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Air conditioning is the focus of the latest legislation from the Spanish Council of Ministers

Spanish government sets out strict rules for energy consumption in buildings

Spanish government sets out strict rules for energy consumption in buildings

The authorities are also preparing a contingency plan with energy-saving measures to be presented at the end of September

Yesterday, 2 August, the Spanish Council of Ministers approved a Royal Decree with a Plan for energy saving and management with air conditioning. Its objective is to reduce the consumption of energy in administrative, commercial and public buildings in the country and promote self-reliance and renewable energy production.

Likewise, the Government indicates that it is preparing a Contingency Plan with energy-saving measures and solidarity actions with the rest of the EU. It will be presented at the end of September.

What are the specific measures for indoor climates?

The energy saving and management plan affects public administration buildings, which already had a recent Decree regarding savings and efficiency; commercial establishments, such as department stores or shopping malls; cultural spaces, such as cinemas or congress centres; or infrastructures intended for the transport of people, such as stations and airports. 

The following obligations need to be observed:

  • Heating and cooling temperatures must be limited to 19 and 27 degrees Celsius respectively. They will have seven days from the publication of the rule to make the limitation effective. It will be in force until 1 November 2023;
  • The buildings will display on posters or screens the mandatory saving measures, among other additional ones that reduce consumption. They will also have seven days to comply and will be effective until 1 November 2023;
  • Before 30 September, the buildings must have automatic locks on the access doors to prevent them from being permanently open;
  • The lighting of the shop windows will have to be turned off after 10:00 p.m. This provision will also apply to public buildings that are unoccupied at the time. They will also have seven days to comply and they will have to do so until 1 November 2023;
  • Those properties that have passed the energy efficiency inspection before 1 January 2021 must undergo an extraordinary review. The deadline to do so will be 31 December 2022.

To quickly carry out energy improvement works in public administration buildings, the management may apply emergency contracting procedures. In addition, these contracts will be executed within a period of less than one month from their formalization.

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