Through their joint venture company Meton Energy in Greece, RWE Renewables and PPC Renewables reached the investment decision for five photovoltaic projects of a combined 210 MW. The construction works are set to begin in the spring.
The transformation of Greece’s coal hub in the Western Macedonia region is about to take a significant leap. Namely, five solar power projects are scheduled to be completed by the end of March 2024 within the partnership between German utility RWE and Public Power Corp. (PPC).
The two companies estimated the investment at EUR 180 million and said half of the sum has been obtained from the National Recovery and Resilience Plan Greece 2.0. Construction works are set to start in the spring. Eurobank and Alpha Bank provided loans of a combined EUR 54 million and the remainder is shareholder equity.
Half of the investment has been covered from Greece’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan
The peak capacity is envisaged at 210 MW in total while network connections should reach an overall 175 MW, the announcement reads. All the sites are at the Amyntaio open cast lignite mine near Florina.
“Clean energy is at the heart of PPC’s strategic planning with the development of renewable energy projects, storage technologies and green hydrogen. I am convinced that renewables combined with storage technologies will form the backbone of the electricity system in the next decade worldwide. We continue to invest independently in renewable energy projects, but also in cooperation with strong partners, such as RWE,” Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of PPC Georgios Stassis said.
Power purchase agreements already signed
The projects have been developed through joint venture firm Meton Energy, or Meton Energeiaki. RWE Renewables holds 51% and PPC Renewables, the Greek company’s branch responsible for the energy transition, owns the rest. PPC, controlled by the government through a minority share, has partnerships with several other domestic and international companies and is aiming to expand in the Balkans.
PPC has partnerships with several other domestic and international companies
Meton Energy has signed bilateral power purchase agreements or PPAs with third parties for a duration of 10 to 15 years. Markus Krebber, CEO of RWE, reiterated that the two utilities are working on more photovoltaic projects in the country.
They aim to build large-scale solar power plants of up to 2 GW in nameplate capacity in Greece. PPC Renewables has contributed nine projects with a combined peak of up to 940 MW, translating to 870 MW in alternating current delivered to the grid. RWE Renewables had a pipeline of a similar size, the statement adds.
Long-term financing agreements are in place
“Within less than one year since founding our joint venture, we have now reached a significant milestone by taking the investment decision for our first photovoltaic plants. Long-term financing agreements are in place, and the route to market has been secured via five signed power purchase agreements,” said Costas Papamantellos, CEO of RWE Renewables Hellas and Meton Energy.
PPC Renewables has obtained up to EUR 35 million in financing last week from the European Investment Bank for its three solar power projects in the nearby Kozani regional unit, also in Western Macedonia.