Cuts imposed by the government will cause 35,000 job losses in renewable energy sectors (read article in Castilian here, La Vanguardia). Despite José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero announcing at the G-20 summit that in the next 10 years there will be a million new jobs in the green economy, various reports highlight another side of the coin, with significant job losses occurring in the wind farm and solar power sectors. The government's decision to halt development in these industries and the cutting of aid, after receiving criticism over economic incentives, has resulted in new projects being stopped. Javier García Breva, president of the PSOE's Fundación Renovables said, "President Zapatero while abroad delivers a speech in favour of clean energy but tens of thousands of jobs are being lost." Tomás Díaz, director of Asif said of the freezing of economic aid, "the solar power market has been paralysed by rules and uncertainty that has lasted more than two years". The Asociación de la Industria Fotovoltaica (Asif) estimates that since 2008, around 30,000 people have lost their jobs, whilst in 2009 the wind energy sector has lost 5,000 jobs. Valeriano Ruiz, president of the Asociación de Promotores Termosolares (Protermosolar) said, "the country gains by reducing their bill for importing fossil fuels, however, you have to buy less CO2 emission rights. The renewable facilities are more evenly spread and its advantages will benefit more people. Zapatero needs to be consistent."
UNESCO debate whether Castellers will be make world heritage status (read article in Castilian here, El Periodico). During a meeting, held tomorrow in Nairobi in Kenya, a UNESCO committee will discuss whether or not castells will make the list with the results to be announced tomorrow or Wednesday. Roger Peiró, cap de colla of the Xiquets de Tarragona said "it would be a deserved recognition and serve to fix the injustice suffered by the castells." He went on to say that castells, successfully bring together all aspects of the Catalan people's spirit," although he regrets that not enough is done in some areas of Catalunya to preserve the tradition. The Culture Minister, Joan Manuel Tresseras, said of the expected result in Nairobi: "We know that castells are something extraordinary, which have a set of virtues increasingly recognised both here and abroad. Recognition in Nairobi would help to internationalise Catalan cultural heritage." Miquel Botella is quietly confident. The president of the Coordinadora de Colles Castelleres de Catalunya (CCCC) said: "We have confidence that our application will be approved." David Miret, the cap de colla of the Castellers de Vilafranca said the official status would serve to protect the practice and prevent it becoming banned or seen as a dangerous activity.
International brand expansion and large retail chains in the Spanish market are primarily responsible for the renewed recover seen on the high street (read article in Castilian here, La Vanguardia). The main shopping streets in Madrid and Barcelona, such as Portal de l'Àngel, Paseo de Gràcia and C. Serrano and Gran Via in Madrid have reported record breaking activity in 2010 and rents have begun to recover. Eduardo Rivero, a partner in Ascana, who have released a study detailing the annual commercial enterprise, said, "the main streets have much more activity than before the crisis because the brands are seeking niche markets. If in recent years the presence of new brands had been increasingly gradually, in 2010, the presence of large international labels has skyrocketed." In 2010, brands such as Apple, Miu Miu, Tiffany's & Co, Ferrari and Karen Millan have opened their first stores in Barcelona while growing brands such as Geox and Guess have moved towards Paseo de Gràcia. So far this year, the premium shopping areas have seen 20 new fashion, accessories and cosmetics brands launched. The street that best illustrates the recovery of the areas is the Paseo de Gràcia, where so far this year has finalised 15 rental transactions, nearly double the previous year. After a significant price adjustment in 2009, the rebound began with a 3 percent increase at the end of the year.