24 January 2011: Greece starts solar expansion

A Greek utility is planning to build a 200Mw solar photovoltaic farm. It needs to find a partner to finance this and is looking internationally (see Newnet: Greece looks to invest €600m in 200MW solar project).

This is welcome news, though only a faltering first step. Greece has large reserves of coal, so gets over half of its electricity and almost all its heat from coal (see Greece – climate and energy statistics). Solar photovoltaic is an obvious technology for Greece. Greece should also use solar thermal for space and water heating, as other Mediterranean countries have, including Israel (see The power of Israeli sunshine).

The Greek government has even less money than most governments do at present, so there is unlikely to be much financial support on offer. However, at least it has given regulatory permission for Greece finally to start to take advantage of its abundant sunshine.

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