The energy and economy ministries are set, any day now, to deliver a joint ministerial decision offering an operating time extension for the main power utility PPC’s lignite-fired Kardia III and IV power stations from a current 17,500-hour limit to 32,000 hours.
The decision will not make specific reference to the Kardia facility but will note that an operating extension to 32,000 hours will be permitted for units offering telethermal services to surrounding regions.
For quite some time now, energy ministry officials have been negotiating the matter with the European Commission but it remains unclear if Brussels will offer its consent for the two Kardia unit extensions.
This specification frames Kardia III and IV and satisfies a long-standing request by residents of Ptolemaida, in the country’s north, for a lifetime extension of the units as the wider region’s heating depends on them in the winter.
Energy minister Giorgos Stathakis and state-controlled PPC’s chief executive Manolis Panagiotakis had both promised residents, power station employees and local MPs that an extension would be granted.
The government recently called for snap elections on July 7.
More recently, the energy ministry has expressed increased confidence of an approval despite the strict terms of the EU’s debarbonization policy.