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Greece has significant global role in solar energy

Published

June 19, 2015

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Published:

June 19, 2015

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In the 2014 European solar market, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and Greece were experiencing, to different degrees, the effects of retroactive government measures, already in place or ones that are expected. SolarPower Europe, formerly EPIA (European Photovoltaic Industry Association), published its yearly global market outlook covering the period through 2019 and including information that Greece was part of a group of three markets, other ones being Italy and Germany, where photovoltaic panels cover more than 7% of power consumption, while all remaining countries have less than half of that share, except for Bulgaria with over 4%. Also, together with Italy Greece had the biggest balance between residential, commercial and utility scale segments in photovoltaic cumulative capacity among 17 markets tracked in the document that was published on June 9. Meanwhile in Romania and Bulgaria, the utilities category, ground systems of over 1 MW, dominated with over 90% of total capacity.

The quest of European institutions to increase the integration of renewable energy sources into the electricity market has pushed several countries to already modify their regulatory framework to support photovoltaic projects. The guidelines on state aid for environmental protection and energy that entered into force in July 2014 stipulate feed-in premiums and tenders, except in special cases, the study said.

Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Romania and Turkey were included in a table grading annual and cumulative installed capacity parallel to political support prospects. The chart includes 20 countries. While Romania grew by a solid 72 MW of solar installations to 1,223 MW, Greece added only 17 MW of capacity but finished with almost 2.6 GW, which ranks it seventh.

Turkey almost tripled its solar power capacity in 2014, but only to 58 MW, and had a favourable political situation. Croatia added 13 MW and concluded the year with an overall 33 MW in photovoltaic facilities and less than favourable prospects. Bulgaria stagnated with a little over 1 GW and a bad political environment.

Greece figured as a key international solar energy participant in a report published by REN21, a Paris-based non-profit association serving as a global platform for renewable energy policy, Energy Press reported. Greece was ranked fourth worldwide in terms of photovoltaic capacity installed per capita. This list was headed by Germany, followed by Italy and Belgium. In the category for solar energy water heating, Greece was placed fifth, behind Cyprus, Austria, Israel and Barbados.

Piraeus Port Authority SA said it continued with the installation and operation of a 430 kW solar park in the port of Neo Ikonio district. The width of the facility is 1,100 meters and it consists of 1,436 panels of 300 watts each. The power plant is absolutely suitable for the environment and with the European Energy Policy, the operator said.

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