Greece goes for green energy

Greece is reforming its energy sector with ambitious goals that will also boost environmental quality and curb climate change.

Greece has great potential to generate renewable energy from its bountiful sunshine and steady winds. The government has resolved to tap this potential and raise the share of ‘green energy’ in the country’s electricity consumption – from 22 per cent in 2015 to 40 per cent by 2020. In parallel, better use is to be made of opportunities to save energy.

One purpose of this approach is to steadily reduce dependence on imported fossil fuels. Another is to contribute to Greek and European energy and climate policy goals. Moves to reform the country’s support scheme for the generation of electricity from renewables could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by some 7.5 million tonnes by 2020.

Such ambitious plans call for wide-ranging changes, including changes to legislation. The Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH provided advice to the Greek Government while it was preparing the new law on support for green electricity, which was adopted in mid-2016. This has established a stable basis for new investment in the sector.

In cooperation with the Greek Ministry of Environment and Energy, GIZ is now helping the Greek Government to carry out further reforms. Acting on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi) and with financial contributions from the European Commission, GIZ’s experts are advising their Greek counterparts on issues such as how to improve licensing procedures for renewable generating facilities, including wind turbines. They are also assisting the government in finding ways to integrate renewable sources into the electricity market and reduce the energy consumption of public buildings.

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