Wednesday, February 21, 2024

    Greece: Possible water supply problems in Thessaloniki this summer due to overuse of water for hydropower plants

    Greek state energy company PPC has sent a warning to the Energy Regulatory Authority (RAE), the Ministry of Energy and the electricity transmission system operator ADMIE, as it found a worrying drop in the level of water reserves in hydro power plants for this period of the year. The new model of the electricity market in Greece has led to serious collateral damage in PPC’s hydro power reserves, which could affect Thessaloniki’s water supply next summer. The problem is attributed to the new market model, which has been criticized by both the Ministry of Energy and RAE for high energy wholesale prices, according to SEE Energy News.

    PPC officials say that every day ADMIE asks the company to increase the amount of energy produced in hydro power plants to meet demand, because producers of energy from heat sources have made offers with very high prices. As a result, water supplies, which are supposed to be a reserve for the summer months, have fallen to alarming levels. This brought the stability of the system to a worrying level for next summer. Problems may arise with the water supply to Thessaloniki, which is supplied by the dams on the Aliakmonas River. The PPC company said that if the situation does not return to normal, there will be problems with the water supply in Thessaloniki next summer. For example, in just one day, ADMIE asked PPC to participate in the production of about 20 GW of electricity from the hydro power system, a quantity that would normally be one week. ADMIE is forced to ask PPC to increase its share in hydro production, because the algorithm used by the online platform for manufacturers’ offers is designed to choose the cheapest price. Therefore, when independent producers increase their prices, then hydro power plants cover an increasing part of the demand. Final electricity prices are good, but water supplies are depleted.