EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Impact of climate change on renewable energy over the Mediterranean and Canary Islands: SOCLIMPACT H2020 project.

Claudia Gutiérrez1, Alba de la Vara1, Juan Jesús González-Alemán2, and Miguel Ángel Gaertner3
Claudia Gutiérrez et al.
  • 1Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Instituto de Ciencias Ambientales, TOLEDO, Spain (
  • 2Universidad Complutense de Madrid,Departamento de Física de la Tierra y Astrofísica, MADRID, Spain
  • 3Universidad de Castilla-La Mancha, Facultad de Ambientales y Bioquímica, TOLEDO, Spain

The enhanced vulnerability of insular regions to climate change highlights the importance of undertaking adaptation and mitigation strategies according to the specific singularities of the islands. Islands are highly dependent on energy imports and the transition to a system with higher shares of renewable energies, in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in these regions, can also reduce the external energy dependence. In this context, the assessment of the impact of climate change on renewable energy resources during the 21st century is crucial for policymakers and stakeholders, due to the increasing vulnerability of the system to climate variability. The aim of this work is to provide an overview of wind and photovoltaic (PV) resources, their variability and complementarity between them, as well as their future changes, in the Euro-Mediterranean and Canary islands. Due to the limitations in land surface availability in the islands for the installation of renewable energy capacity, the analysis is extended to offshore wind and photovoltaic energy, which may have an important role in the future increases of renewable energy share. Variability is assessed through the analysis of energy droughts (low-productivity periods). In addition, a case study for optimization of wind and solar combination over the Canary islands is performed. In that sense, a sensitivity test is developed to find the optimal combination of PV and wind that reduce energy droughts and the persistence of that conditions at a local scale. To that end, we use climate variables from a series of regional climate simulations derived from Euro-CORDEX and MENA-CORDEX for the RCP2.6 and RCP8.5 emission scenarios and for the periods 2046-2065 and 2081-2100. The obtained results are very dependent on the region analyzed. Whereas an overall decrease is projected in wind resource over the Mediterranean islands for the future, an increase is projected for the Canarian archipelago. Changes in PV productivity are small in any case, as well as variability changes. These results, which are part of the SOCLIMPACT H2020 project, highlight the importance of targeting climate information and give condensed and valuable data to facilitate climate-related policy decision making for decarbonization and Blue Growth in the islands.

How to cite: Gutiérrez, C., de la Vara, A., González-Alemán, J. J., and Gaertner, M. Á.: Impact of climate change on renewable energy over the Mediterranean and Canary Islands: SOCLIMPACT H2020 project., EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-4218,, 2021.


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