Armed with the ambition to put Greece at the forefront of the fight for climate
change, allied with legislation that paves the way for achieving the goal of carbon
neutrality, the European Union is promoting a strategy for sustainable
development as described in the “Green Deal” text.
This ambition is reinforced almost by all unanimously of the E.U Member States,
which in turn allows the EU. to pursue the success of all its binding goals. Member
States should contribute to their achievement through the implementation of National
Energy and Climate Plans. Greece is at the forefront and is actively involved in this
process, as it has already submitted both its own National Plan for Energy and
Climate and the Long-Term Strategy for the year 2050.
NECP is now the main pillar of strategy for our country. Its main goals are summed
up in the penetration of Renewable Energy Sources(RES) by 35%, energy savings by
38%, the additional reduction of GHG emissions of 10 Mton (megatons) CO2 and the
increase in the classification of electric vehicles by up to 30% by 2030.
At the same time, achieving these goals opens new perspectives for the country’s
economy, as it presupposes the inflow of large investments.
In this light, we expect an increase in investment flows to reach up to the level of € 44
billion, of which about 9 billion will be allocated for electricity generation from
Renewable Energy Sources, another 5.5 billion will be required for the development
of electricity network infrastructure, while another € 11 billion will be allocated for
energy efficiency measures. For RES, we estimate that € 12.6 billion will emerge in
the form of an increase in domestic value-added, another 4.8 billion. as an increase in
the income of the workers, while, finally, for the energy upgrade of the buildings, 8.1
billion emerge. and 3.4 billion respectively.
At this point, special mention should be made of the government’s strategy to stop
relying on lignite as a form of fuel, which is expected to be completed by 2028,
which is one of the most strategically important moves of our country towards
achieving a cleaner and more “green” economy until 2030.
The goal of no longer using brown coal will require a bold shift in the use of natural
gas, which has been described internationally as the “fuel-bridge” to the energy transition
and the zero-carbon economy.
However, at this point, it should be noted that the European Regulation Plan for the
programming period 2021-2027, largely excludes the eligibility of natural gas
infrastructure projects, in terms of funding from the current NSRF 2021-2027, which
is a challenge and a justified reflection.
Greece has been quick to submit specific proposals to the Brussels authorities, with
the ultimate goal of revising this decision, taking into account – among other things –
that new infrastructure is maturing at this stage, such as FSRU Alexandroupolis or the
UGS of Kavala contributes to the diversification of energy sources and the
strengthening of Europe’s supply security.
Greece is also particularly outspoken on cross-border hydrocarbon transport issues,
which boost energy security.
The TAP pipeline, which will soon be completed, but also new ambitious projects,
such as the East Med Pipeline whose intergovernmental agreement was recently
submitted for ratification by Parliament, gave a new impetus to Greece’s role in the
The cooperation with all the states of the region is a constant pursuit of the
government of Kyriakos Mitsotakis and in particular of the Ministry of Environment
and Energy. I am very happy to be involved in this project, a promising organisation
such as the East Med Gas Forum based in Egypt, which can become a “game-
changer” of the SE area of the Mediterranean.
In closing, I believe that the 5th Cretan Energy Conference will be an opportunity
for further dialogue and exchange of views on the energy events in our region, in
which Greece is claiming an active and decisive role.
Alexandra Sdoukou is General Secretary of Energy & Mineral Resources at the
Ministry of Environment and Energy.
The article was written as part of the 5th Cretan Energy Conference /
International Conference & Exhibition.