Over the past 15 years, Enel Green Power Hellas has been at the forefront of Greece’s energy sector, pioneering renewable energy. With a portfolio of 59 operational renewable plants totaling 482 MW from wind, solar, and hydro—and with six new solar plants, totaling 84 MW, under construction across Greece—the company has established a solid foundation that is crucial to Greece’s transition to a post-lignite era.

Greece’s National Plan for Energy and Climate aims for 80% of energy to be obtained from renewables by 2030. This necessitates a collaborative effort from the private and public sectors that will enable the country to fully leverage its abundant renewable energy resources, ensuring greater energy security and autonomy.

Repowering can significantly increase the energy output of aging power plants

Investment interest in renewables in Greece is currently high, yet several barriers continue to hinder the acceleration of the country’s green energy transition. Recent initiatives and policy changes aimed at addressing these—such as new legislation streamlining accelerated permitting procedures—have been well-received by the market and by investors, but further progress is required regarding grid capacity and connection procedures. The power grid serves as the backbone of the energy system. In order to achieve higher penetration of renewables in Greece’s energy mix, investments must be made in enhancing the grid’s capacity to accommodate the increasing renewable energy generation, and priority should be given to green energy producers with the expertise and technical knowhow to execute rapid renewable energy projects.

Investments should focus on projects that optimize the performance of existing renewable energy projects and efficiently utilize grid capacity. Examples of such projects include repowering aging renewable energy plants, hybridizing existing power plants by combining different renewable technologies, and integrating renewables with energy storage systems.

Repowering can significantly increase the energy output of aging power plants, most of which are located in high resource areas that have been underutilized due to decreased equipment performance.

Hybridization, on the other hand, can enhance a plant’s annual capacity factor, reduce its stochastic nature, leading to lower balancing costs, and improve the utilization of the existing grid without requiring additional grid capacity.

Energy storage is undoubtedly crucial for ensuring a secure energy supply. Coupling batteries with renewable energy plants transforms them into dispatchable generators capable of quickly responding to the energy system’s needs. It offers a rapid solution for reliable, sustainable, and affordable energy penetration, significantly contributing to energy independence. Enel Green Power Hellas has already incorporated battery energy storage systems (BESS) into its strategic plans, endorsing the combination of renewable energy projects with battery storage to optimize grid utilization and facilitate the connection of more renewable energy plants.

Attracting investments and securing public financing for such initiatives, while also establishing a favorable legal and regulatory framework, will help Greece compensate for the delayed energy transition and development of renewables in the country. This will ultimately benefit citizens and businesses, many of whom are affected by the severe impacts of energy poverty and climate change.