Spain: action plans for heating and cooling at local level

In June 2024, la Fundación Renovables issued a guide to promote sustainable cooling in Spanish cities with more than 45,000 inhabitants. Solutions include installing heat pumps, district cooling and heating networks, energy-efficient renovations, and nature-based solutions.

A recent  EU directive on energy efficiency which entered into force in October 2023, provided for the future creation of local heating and cooling action plans. In this context, a Spanish think tank, la Fundación Renovables (Renewable Energy Foundation) issued a practical guide for heating and cooling in municipalities with more than 45,000 inhabitants. [1]

According to the Spanish Ministry for the Ecological Transition, the building sector is responsible for about 8% of the country's greenhouse emissions. [2] In Spain, there are 162 municipalities with more than 45,000 inhabitants, but only one of them has a plan both for heating and cooling.


In this guide, la Fundación Renovables suggests three main lines of action:

  • Cooling and heating equipment.

The main goal is to remove all gas boilers from public buildings by 2025 and to achieve a replacement rate in the residential sector of 500,000 dwellings per year. According to the guide, this can be achieved by promoting the installation of individual heat pumps that can also provide cooling in summer, centralized heating systems, as well as district heating and cooling networks.


  • Building renovation.

For more energy-efficient buildings, the guide recommends renovations such as changing facades, replacing roofs and windows, etc.


  • The implementation of nature-based solutions.

This involves mapping the areas of cities most exposed to the heat island phenomenon to develop a urban transformation. This action can be combined with active cooling technologies.


For more information, the complete guide is available in open access on the “Fundación Renovables” website (in Spanish).




[1] Fundación Renovables. Plan de climatización de municipios de más de 45.000 habitantes.

[2] Informe resumen Inventario Emisiones GEI (marzo 2024).