The Greek Island Ikaria became home to the second hybrid project in Europe after a long wait of more than 3 decades
Greece’s Public Power Corp (PPC) has launched Europe’s second hybrid renewable energy park, combining wind and hydraulic power, on the island of Ikaria. The first hybrid plant was launched in 1983 on Kythnos island.
The park is part of the utility’s vision to turn many of Greece’s off-grid islands into renewably powered ones.
The 6.9 megawatt project – similar to one located on El Hierro, the smallest of the Canary Islands – will replace part of the power now produced by an oil-fired station on Ikaria, cutting carbon dioxide emissions by 13,800 tonnes a year.
It will allow Ikaria to meet 50% of its energy needs through renewable sources. Recent commitment to shut down coal-fired plants generating nearly 2 gigawatts of power in the coming years under a European policy to fight climate change and high CO2 emission costs has prompted PPC to refocus on renewables after 1983.
The system consists of:
1) Small – Hydro Station: 4.1 MW hydro turbines which are installed in conjunction with the existing water reservoir.
2) Grid Master Control System: The different types of generating machines installed in conjunction with the existing diesel and their parallel operation, will be controlled, co-ordinated and maximised by a “smart” system (intelligent power dispatcher) regulating the availability of energy, frequency, voltage regulation, fuel economy, emission reduction and noise reduction.
The 50-million-euro ($56.32 million) hybrid station fits in with Greece’s plans to double green energy in power generation by 2030 to cut its above-EU average reliance on imported oil and on coal.
Greece wants to cut the share of coal and other fossil fuel in its power generation mix by more than a third and achieve a 48% share of wind and solar by 2030, from the current level of 26%. PPC has said it plans to spend about 600 million euros on solar, wind and small hydroelectric projects to quadruple its renewables capacity to 640 megawatts by 2022.