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Spain Air Conditioning Crackdown Set to Take Effect

  • Starting Aug. 9, commercial buildings face AC temperature caps
  • Spain is among countries looking to cut down on energy use
Air conditioning units in Seville, Spain.

Air conditioning units in Seville, Spain.

Photographer: Marcelo del Pozo/Bloomberg

Escaping the sweltering heat baking much of Spain just got a little bit harder. The government last week declared that businesses will not be allowed to run their air conditioning below 80 degrees Fahrenheit (27 degrees Celsius), part of a broader effort to save energy as Europe contends with record heat and races to cut its dependence on Russian gas. 

Starting on Aug. 9 and lasting through November 2023, commercial buildings will have to keep summer air conditioning above 80 degrees -- matching a policy in place at public buildings  -- and winter heating below 66 degrees Fahrenheit (19 degrees Celsius). The new rules apply to theaters, cinemas, museums, restaurants and shopping malls, while kindergartens, hospitals, schools and universities are off the hook. So are gyms, hair salons and laundries.