ATHENS – Trying to wean off using coal more quickly – with Russia’s invasion of Ukraine showing how reliant the European Union is on Russian energy – Greece specified terms for awarding exploration licences for its geothermal potential.
That was a first step towards tapping a domestic resource to cut energy costs and achieve zero net greenhouse emissions by 2050, the Energy Ministry said, according to Reuters.
Goals have been seen to be movable, however, after often being missed as Greece still produces most of its power from coal instead of the sun or wind, despite an abundance of both, or more sustainable sources.
Russia’s invasion set oil and gas prices through the roof after energy prices had already soared during the COVID-19 pandemic because of supply chain problems and other difficulties, hitting households hard in the pocketbook.
Greece has been slowly moving away from coal in the 21st Century and shifting toward reneables to produce power but still is largely dependent on dgas imports – mostly from Russia.
Greece has backed EU sanctions on Russia for the invasion despite historically close ties with the country, which shares and Orthodox religion but so far there hasn’t been blowback from Moscow.
Potential investors are showing keen interest in Greece’s geothermal energy prospects and the New Democracy government is set to define the areas in which it will award licenses after a public consultation period is done.