Kardia 4 power station’s costly repair may keep unit sidelined

The extent of technical problems encountered at Kardia 4, a main power utility PPC power station forced out of action several weeks ago, appears to be greater than had been originally anticipated and  could keep the facility sidelined for the entire year, if not longer, sources have informed.

The cost of the damage suffered by the unit may run into several tens of millions of euros. If confirmed, the unit’s future will be placed in grave doubt.

Kardia 4, a unit with a 280-MW capacity, was introduced in 1981, six years following the launch of Kardia 1, part of the same complex. Having already clocked up 36 years, Kardia 4 was scheduled to be withdrawn nine years from now, in 2026, according to the facility’s original operating plan. However, a revised plan has slated the unit’s withdrawal for an earlier date, no later than 2020, as authorities have not gone ahead with an environmental upgrade.

If the extent of the damage is confirmed, PPC will need to decide whether to go ahead with a costly repair plan for a unit due to be withdrawn in three years time. More likely than not, PPC will opt to avoid the outlay.

PPC chose not go ahead with an expensive repair job at Ptolemaida 4, another power station in Greece’s north whose withdrawal was imminent, after it was damaged by a fire that broke out in 2014.