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By José Carlos García Fajardo *
For years Spain was recognized as a pioneer in the development of renewable energies. Due to its geographical location, it enjoys a climate in which light exceeds more than 300 days a year. His research and projects came to amaze in California, the Middle East, and countries in Europe and Africa. In our own territory, great plains were used, previously dedicated to sustainable agriculture, pastures and the cultivation of flax and other varieties financed by the European Union. But they were difficult to fit in industry and commerce, up to the scandal that many owners planted fields of sunflowers, rapeseed or flax that they often left uncollected because the subsidies from the European community were more substantial than their commercialization. This happened with sunflower oil, which went so far as to uproot olive trees in fields where oils of the best quality were produced for centuries, many of them predating the Romans and the incomparable agriculture contributed by the Arabs. Thousands of hectares of sunflowers were planted just as the destruction of traditional vineyards that produced wines recognized and valued around the world had to be stopped in time. Subsidies were received for the number of hectares of olive trees or vines of vineyards destroyed. Campaigns were made by Minister Salgado against wine and alcoholic spirits. Competing countries such as France and Italy took millions of liters of wine and oil in tanks to mix them with their wines, bottle them and export them under Italian or French names. Today this seems incredible, an absurdity like the one that happened with the unusual competition with citrus fruits, tomatoes and other early products from North Africa and Israel.
Extensive surfaces were covered with solar screens, wind and maritime plants that later, bastard interests promoted the alteration in prices and the longed-for technological and commercial development of these alternative energies by multinationals and lobbies at the service of the hydrocarbon industry, refineries and transportation.
Thus we were in this unfortunate country, blessed by the sun and by coasts with wonderful waters that suffered from the real estate bubble that destroyed part of our coastline. Then the black gold fever broke out as in its day also the destruction of the richest fishing grounds of the Atlantic and the Pacific to the point of sending Spanish warships to protect the devastating fishing off the coasts of Ethiopia, Eritrea in the Indian under the infamous pretext of fighting against the "pirates" of the area that were none other than the natives of those countries who had been prevented from fishing in their fishing grounds.
Now we endorse the mobilization of citizens to denounce oil exploration at sea. Again, as in the Canary Islands, Tarragona or the Basque coast, the company that has been favored by the Government has been the multinational Repsol. You have permission to drill only 10 km. from the Costa del Sol. The authorized area for prospecting is located in the sector with the greatest seismic danger in the country, next to the enormous fault that joins the Iberian Peninsula with the African continent.
Neither the company nor the Government have considered it necessary to study this seismic danger to evaluate the project. After having said No to prospecting in the Alboran Sea, Green Peace's ship, Arctic Sunrise, will continue to the Canary Islands to repeat the same message: No to prospecting, No to an energy model that does not support clean energy, Not to the benefit of a few at the expense of the environment and the way of life of thousands of citizens. We will keep saying it as many times as necessary. Thousands of people have already said it. Let's stop this fever for prospecting. Greenpeace is an independent organization that does not accept money from governments or companies to be able to denounce all those people or institutions that threaten the planet. Only committed people like you make our work possible.
* Emeritus Professor of the Complutense University of Madrid (UCM). Director of the Center for Solidarity Collaborations (CCS)
Center for Solidarity Collaborations (CCS)