Greece and coal

From Global Energy Monitor

Greece is the second largest producer of lignite in the European Union after Germany, and most electricity is produced from lignite,[1] which supplies a third of Greece's energy.[2] The largest domestic coal producer is the government-owned Public Power Corporation (PPC). Most hard coal is imported from Russia.[3]

Power Generation

22% of electricity was generated from lignite in 2015.[4] PPC is attempting to sell 40% of its coal-fired capacity by 2019.[5]

Proposed Coal-Fired Power Stations

  • PPC is reported to have decided to invest approximately €1.5 billion[6] in the new lignite-fired unit 5 of Ptolemaida power station, and finance for this is being provided from Germany.

Legal Action

In September 2017 the permitting process was challenged.[8]

Air Pollution

All lignite units that will operate in 2021 (including the not yet completed Ptolemais 5) will have to upgrade to comply with the EU Best Available Techniques manual (LCP BREF), which sets new, stricter emissions limits.[4]


In 2013 the government spent 150 million euros subsidizing coal.[9]

EU coal phase out

Like all EU members, Greece has a legally-binding clean energy target. Greece is aiming for 18 percent of energy consumption to be from renewables by 2020.[10] EU policy makers and electricity companies consider investing in coal not to make any business sense compared to investing in renewable energy in Greece.[6]

Western Macedonia is a "Coal Region in Transition".[11]


The government is tendering for more solar.[10]


The government is tendering for more wind.[10]

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