Renewable energy associations and investors have called for legal and regulatory framework revisions that would facilitate repowering, or the replacement of old RES equipment at wind and solar energy parks with upgraded modern technology offering far higher yields.
Prime RES locations around Greece are occupied by installations that date back ten to 20 years and are producing yields well below the potential promised by modern technology.
Aristotelis Hantavas, Enel Green Power’s head official for Europe and president of the Solar Power Europe association, spoke extensively on the matter at a recent industry conference.
“If repowering is facilitated, the country can, in a short period of time, cover one third or possibly half of the ground that remains to be covered to reach the 2030 goal without needing to open up many new wind and solar energy areas, a development that prompts reaction by local authorities, amongst others,” Hantavas pointed out.
The installation of modern wind and solar energy systems in place of older technologies could boost yields by up to three times, experts believe.
This does not necessarily mean investors will secure fixed tariffs as remuneration for any additional capacity installed. RES sector officials believe remuneration will still be based on older agreements for the remainder of their terms.
Once existing contracts have expired, investors should expect to be remunerated for any additional capacity offered by their upgrades through target model markets.
According to current regulations, capacity increases at sites hosting existing solar or wind energy parks are limited to 10 percent.
Also, investors are not permitted to sell RES output through more than one market channel, for example, through tariffs for one part of production and two-way agreements for the rest.
Repowering is currently being widely discussed around Europe, especially in countries with extended renewable energy backgrounds.