IDAE (The Institute for the diversification and saving of
Energy) is a public business-structured entity, reporting to the Ministry for
Science and Technology through the Secretary of State for Science and
The basic function of the IDAE is to promote energy
efficiency and the rational use of energy in Spain. It also seeks to promote diversity of energy sources
and the use of renewable sources of energy. It promotes these aims through
dissemination activities, technical consultancy and the implementation of
projects with a technologically innovative component. Its action includes
financial support (participation in joint ventures applying to heat and power
projects, shareholdings in joint-stock companies and cooperation agreements).
In the biomass field, the action covers both biofuels
and bio-ethanol production.
The IDAEs objectives in relation to the
biomass sector are to develop the market for installations using this renewable
source of energy, both for heat production and electricity generation. This is
in line with the targets set in the Renewable Energy Promotion Plan, which
envisages use increasing to 900 ktoe/year of thermal
energy and 5,100 ktoe/year of electricity by 2010.
Several projects that are being developed at present are the following :
- A joint-venture IDAE-Dacsa
(Almāssera, Valencia), the first
project of this kind to be carried out in Europe. Its innovative
character lies in its use of fluidized bed combustion, using rice husks (from Maicerias Espanolas SA) as fuel.
- A biomass plant in Navarra
(Sangüesa), the first power plant in Spain using straw as
fuel. The straw (160,000 tonnes per year are consumed) is burnt with a
vibrating grate system.
- A plant for the production of biodiesel in Reus (Tarragona, Catalonia) with an annual
capacity of 50,000 tonnes and a bioethanol plant with
a capacity of 80,000 tonnes per year in Cartagena (Murcia).
Region of operation
The majority of investments in this area have taken place in Spain,
but the Institute also co-operates in projects in other areas of the world,
mainly the European Union, North of Africa and Latin America.