Greece prepares for first wind auction

GREECE: The government has announced its first wind and solar PV auctions, as it seeks to make 2.6GW of renewable capacity available through tenders to be held by 2020.

Up to 300MW of Greek wind capacity could be auctioned in July (pic: Eren)

According to the terms of the inaugural tender launched by Greece’s Regulatory Authority for Energy (RAE), up to 300MW each of wind and solar capacity will be assigned a guaranteed tariff.

The application deadline is 5 June, and auctions will be held on 2 July.

Bidders must have environmental and grid connection permits for projects in place. For wind, sites must be 3-50MW, while a ceiling price has been set at €90/MWh. The price secured in the auction will last for 20 years.

For the maximum 300MW of wind projects to be assigned the guaranteed tariff, however, at least 75% more capacity, or a minimum of 525MW must be tendered.

If not, the capacity for which the tariff will be made available will be reduced accordingly.

Annual tenders for wind and solar are expected to follow in 2019 and 2020 of the same size of this initial auction, while two technology-blind auctions of 400MW are also planned, with the first in 2019.

"We expressed our doubts about the effectiveness of the joint auctions and their impact on total costs for the system," said Hellenic Wind Energy Association CEO Panagiotis Papastamatiou, pointing to the recent technology-blind auctions in Germany, which saw solar secure all available capacity and was criticised by German wind and solar associations alike.

In the near term, Papastamatiou said HWEA is working to make the first tender a success but believes there will be insufficient projects participating for the full 300MW to be assigned.