Renewable electricity

in Portugal

The growth of the renewable electricity sector in recent years has played a key role in the decarbonisation of the economy in Portugal, and today it is the sector that contributes most to reducing energy dependency.

This progression of renewable electricity brings enormous benefits both in terms of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels, as well as in terms of employment generated, reduction of energy bills and the country’s socio-economic development.

Installed capacity of the different electricity generation sources in Portugal

(2000-2020)

Source: DGEG, APREN’s analysis.

Electricity generation in Mainland Portugal

(1970-2020)

The increased use of the Portuguese endogenous and renewable energy sources as means to produce electricity has changed the electricity generation mix composition in Portugal and has, consecutively, played an increasingly determinant role in the satisfaction of demand. This situation was quite evidente in 2020 due to the drop in demand resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic. The figure shows that as of 2005, renewables have played an increasingly importante role in meeting the electricity demand.

Source: REN, EDA, EEM, APREN’s analysis.

Share of the different energy sources in the portuguese electricity generation mix

(2000-2020)

Note: This percentage value is referred to the total National electricity generation.
Source: REN, EDA, EEM, APREN’s analysis.

Energy dependency rate

(2000-2020)

Source: DGEG, 2021, APREN analysis (2021).
Note: The value indicated for the normalized energy dependency for 2020 results from an APREN estimate, while the real value is the provisional value published in DGEG’s Synthetic Balance Sheet 2020.

Avoided costs with fossil fuel imports

(2011-2020)

Source: DGEG, Worldbank, ERSE, REN, EDA, EEM, APREN’s analysis.

Contribution of RES-E to the greenhouse gas emissions reduction

(2011-2020)

The renewable electricity avoided, at the national level, the emission of 123 megatonnes of C02-eq between 2011 and 2020, which is equivalent to around 78% of the C02 emissions from the road transport sector for the same period. The value for the avoided C02 emission allowances was estimated at €426 million in 2020.

Source: SendCO2, DGEG, Worldbank, ERSE, REN, EDA, EEM, APREN’s analysis.

Employment created by the renewable electricity sector

(2011-2020)

The investment on the renewable sector contributed significantly to the creation of specialized jobs (direct and indirect) and to territorial cohesion. This reinforcement is mainly due to the location of some projects in less favoured socio-economic areas. It is estimated that, at the end of 2020, the renewable sector employed more than 55 thousand people. However, it should be noted that these figures are the result of a macroeconomic study developed in 2019 by Deloitte, which does not consider the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, so it is expected that the real figure for 2020 will be much lower than indicated.

Source: Study of Macroeconomic Impact of Renewable Energy Sector in Portugal, Deloitte, 2014 (2010-2013); Impact of electricity from renewable energy sources, Deloitte, 2019 (2014-2020).

Contribuition of the renewable electricity sector to the GDP

Source: Study of Macroeconomic Impact of Renewable Energy Sector in Portugal, Deloitte, 2014 (2010-2013); Impact of electricity from renewable energy sources, Deloitte, 2019 (2014-2020).

Contribution of the renewable eletricity sector to the Social Security, Corporate Income Tax and Municipal Surtax

Source: Study of Macroeconomic Impact of Renewable Energy Sector in Portugal, Deloitte, 2014 (2010-2013); Impact of electricity from renewable energy sources, Deloitte, 2019 (2014-2020).