A Greek decarbonization compensation request forwarded to the European Commission for power utility PPC’s need to keep operating lignite-fired power stations, nowadays loss-incurring units, from 2021 to 2023, has developed into a slow-moving ordeal locked in Brussels bureaucracy.
Though, until recently, the Greek request appeared to be headed towards approval, Brussels officials have since slowed down the case, extensively questioning the claim through a stream of emails to the energy ministry.
State-run PPC is seeking respective compensation amounts of 180, 150 and 200 million euros for the three-year period.
The European Commission has been relentless with its questioning despite appearing to recognize the validity of the Greek compensation request.
The Netherlands and Germany have both received similar decarbonization compensation amounts.
Greece, according to some sources, has not pursued the right strategy as it should have delayed the decarbonization compensation request case until the finalization of an older antitrust case concerning PPC’s lignite monopoly.
Though Greece and the European Commission reached an agreement last October, according to which 40 percent of PPC’s lignite-generated electricity production must be exclusively made available to independent suppliers at a pre-determined price, not below cost, the decision has yet to be implemented.
A market test still needs to be conducted to measure the market’s level of interest in this offer. Given the cost of lignite, independent players may not be interested.