A moment during the protest march in Madrid. / SUR

Malaga protesters take part in Madrid march against solar megaparks

Protest groups from Casares, Coín and Álora went to the Spanish capital to take part in a demonstration organised by Aliente

ANDREA JIMÉNEZ MALAGA.

Different groups of people in Malaga who are against the planned solar megaparks took part in a massive protest march in Madrid this week. It was organised by Aliente (Alianza Energía y Territorio), an association made up of more than 170 organisations from all over the country. Residents of municipalities such as Casares, Coín, Álora and Pizarra were there, together with protestors from Granada, Teruel, Zaragoza, León and Valencia. They marched from Atocha to the Puerta del Sol to make their demands heard: they want a "distributed and fair" model of energy transition, and access to energy to be more democratic. "The way they are developing renewable energy projects is an offence against the locations, their biodiversity, their rights and their real options for the future. Our slogan is 'Renewables, yes, but not like this', and we want an energy model that, for once, puts people and life at the centre of things," they explained.

The protesters from Malaga set off from two departure points. One was Álora, where the coach left at 7.55am with a second stop at Zalea before heading for Madrid. It contained representatives of groups from the whole Guadalhorce valley and inland areas, where numerous solar parks have been planned. The other departure point was Casares, stopping at Casares Costa, Estepona, Benahavís and San Pedro Alcántara to pick up more members of protest groups from the Costa del Sol.

"Fair" energy transition

When the march ended at the Puerta del Sol, speeches were made by communicator Odile Rodríguez de la Fuente, university professor Margarita Mediavilla de Geeds-Uva and farmer Joaquín Araujo. Aliente spokespersons Luis Bolonio and Diana Osuna explained the objectives of this protest march and called for a "fair" energy transition.

The protesters say that these megaparks will mean more than 10 million square metres of land will be covered in photovoltaic panels, especially in Coín, Alozaina, Casarabonela, Guaro, Monda, Ojén and Marbella.

"Expropriation of private land and the destruction of environmentally valuable areas are becoming normalised now, and because the authorities are doing very little about it and applying very few resources to the problem, it's up to the people to do something to get it stopped," they say.