Cretan diesel output costing less than supply from mainland

Cretan electricity demand through the island’s grid interconnection with the Peloponnese has fallen to its lowest level since the line’s recent launch as electricity currently costs less to generate at the island’s diesel-fueled facilities than to bring in from the mainland through the interconnection.

Cretan electricity demand through the Crete-Peloponnese interconnection fell to approximately 18 GWh in November, the lowest since the line’s launch several months ago, according to data provided by power grid operator IPTO in a monthly report.

Demand for electricity through the mainland link was well above this level in preceding months. In July, when the interconnection was launched, demand reached 48 GWh, rose to 64.6 GWh in August, peaked at 65.2 GWh in September and eased to 50 GWh in October before plummeting to November’s level of 18 GWh.

Electricity prices on the mainland are the main reason behind this sharp decline, a bigger factor than the demand drop following the tourism-related peak, market officials noted.

Diesel prices have risen only mildly compared to the skyrocketing wholesale natural gas prices of recent months that have prompted an electricity price surge as about half the country’s electricity is generated at natural gas-fueled power stations.

The potential benefits of Crete’s grid interconnection with the mainland cannot be disputed in the long term, when RES units are expected to dominate generation and energy storage capacity will have grown, the officials pointed out.