What if the answer to all the economic and financial woes Greece is witnessing came from solar ? This is the bet the local government is willing to place as more than 16 percent of the population is unemployed. To Ecogeek :
” Greece has laid out a plan to get out of a recession and to spread renewables through the country and the EU. The plan would see the country expanding its solar capacity to 10 GW by 2050 through financing by international investors.”
Ten gigawatts of capacity in 40 years seems very little when one knows that Germany installed no less than seven gigawatts of capacity in 2010 alone.
But at least they are thinking about renewables to solve their problems…
A quick search proves that the expansion of solar would be a good thing for Greece in terms of climate change mitigation. Indeed, the electricity mix in 2002 was 93 percent thermal generation, with lignite (coal) accounting for 60 percent.
Oil is also used a lot in the islands to run generators. At today’s prices, this must be a real burden to the local economies. Renewables accounted in 2002 for seven percent : six percent hydro and one tiny percent wind power. (Sources : Energy Mix Fact Sheet and General Information on the Greek Electricity Sector )
What about offshore wind ? With floating wind turbines located far from the coasts, the sights off the beaches and islands wouldn’t be spoiled.
More importantly, what about energy efficiency ? We know that renewables are important in building tomorrow’s world, but efficiency matters much more.