PPC: Phasing out of lignite units to reduce annual cost by 400 mln euros

The electricity cost will be reduced by 400 million euros a year with the phasing out of the majority of the Public Power Corporation (PPC) lignite units by 2023 as provided by the five-year business plan. During this period, carbon dioxide emissions from PPC power plants are projected to drop by 15 million tonnes or 75 pct, from 20 million tonnes in 2019 to 5 million tonnes in 2023.

The rights average price, according to PPC data, is around 26 euros per tonne this year, which means that a 15 million tonne reduction in emissions will reduce the cost of electricity production by 390 million euros. An amount that could be higher if – according to forecasts – rights prices rise further in the coming years.

The spike of the carbon dioxide emissions rights cost (CO2 prices rose from around 6 euros in 2017 to 15 euros in 2018) was one of the main causes of PPC’s economic derailment. In 2018 PPC’s total CO2 spending doubled to 279.5 million euros, from 141.6 million euros in 2017.

The business plan presented by PPC President and CEO Georgios Stassis estimates that lignite’s share in PPC’s production base will drop to 8 pct in 2024, from 37 pct in 2019, while renewables share will rise to 17 pct from 2 pct and natural gas along with hydropower to 74 pct from 61 pct.