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Greece gets EU nod for state aid for Amfilochia plant, renewables in islands

Greece will support Terna Energy with EUR 250 million in the construction of the Amfilochia pumped storage hydropower plant, while the government earmarked EUR 1.4 billion for the development of renewable electricity in non-interconnected islands.

The European Commission has approved, under the European Union’s state aid rules, Greece’s plan to provide Terna Energy with a grant and annual support for its Amfilochia pumped hydropower plant project and to pay a total of EUR 1.4 billion in sliding feed-in premiums for wind and solar power facilities with energy storage in non-interconnected islands.

Amfilochia pumped storage plant has PCI status

The measure for Amfilochia, located in the country’s west, will be partly funded from the National Recovery and Resilience Plan Greece 2.0, which recently received a green light from the EU. The unit will have a capacity of 680 MW in turbine mode and 730 MW for pumping. It is one of the EU’s projects of common interest (PCI).

The aid will take the form of a €250 million investment grant and annual support – financed from a levy on electricity suppliers – to complement market revenues, in order to reach an acceptable rate of return on the investment. Greece submitted the request last year.

Hybrid power plants for isolated islands

The government in Athens got approval for the promotion of renewable electricity in the 29 autonomous non-interconnected island electricity systems in Greece, which actually cover 47 islands. The EUR 1.4 billion scheme supports the production of electricity from hybrid power stations, which both generate and store solar and wind-based electricity.

Around 80% of electricity in the Greek islands is currently produced with diesel and oil. Due to saturated grids there, adding storage facilities to renewable electricity generation units is necessary to increase the share of renewable energy sources, the commissioners pointed out.

The islands, including Crete, will be covered by the scheme until their connection to mainland Greece. The government aims to support 264 MW of new renewable electricity capacity through 2026.

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