The audit office of Republic of Cyprus published information according to which Cyprus paid €570 mln in fines for its greenhouse gas emissions between 2017 and 202 with more fines on the way as the EU toughens member state emission targets.
The audit office warned that in recent years there has been an “increasing trend in emissions while the EU shows a significant decrease, which makes it more difficult for Cyprus to achieve the stricter future goals to which it has agreed”, according to the Cyprus Mail.
Energy Minister George Papanastasiou told the Sunday Mail that the Cyprus public pays €300 mln in fines a year in greenhouse gas emissions allowances that is invariably borne by the public.
Such a shame! If Cyprus had invested in renewable energy since 2014 instead of focusing on the offshore gas finds which in most likelihood will never arrive to shore, then the situation could have been better, or the fines would most definitely have been lower.
But all hope is not lost, since the private sector can and should be allowed to play a major role in helping the situation, and crowdfunding of new projects is the way forward.
Normally, energy efficiency projects are small, highly fragmented, and their use cases for a business are not clearly defined. That’s why they are perceived as risky by investors and as a result, financing of such projects is not sufficient. However, crowdfunding for energy projects is expected to make a difference in the long-term financing of energy-efficient businesses according to Nick Perzhanovskiy, writing in the Fintech Strategist.
Energy-related projects benefit not only from the availability of financing. Also, stakeholders in the sustainable energy projects receive technical assistance when they register a project through the European Investment Project Portal, and they can use the advisory services provided by the European Investment Advisory Hub, according to the Fintech Strategist.
Stop wasting RES
According to data from the Association of Licensed Electrical Contractors of Cyprus, about €8 mln worth of cheap energy produced by Renewable Energy Sources (RES) will be rejected by the island’s grid by the end of the year, as it cannot handle the excess load.
In comments to the news site Stockwatch, the president of the Cyprus Association of Licensed Electrical Contractors, George Kyriakou, said a third (32.23%) of energy produced by solar systems in April was denied.
And the president of the Cyprus Hydrogen Association, Makis Ketonis, was quoted by the Cyprus Mail that in Q12023, there were cuts of 10,000 megawatts of energy produced with hydrogen, while by the end of the year, they are estimated to reach 30-40 thousand MW.
In June, an Energy Ministry official confirmed that the grid rejects 20% of RES produced by solar parks and photovoltaic systems.
MPs were told by the end of 2023, the grid will have rejected some 30,000 to 40,000 MW.
It is clear that the government should allow the private sector to secure energy storage licenses to allow the RES system to work efficiently, and crowdfunding will play a huge role in funding such projects as Cyprus needs to rush and meet very tough emission deadlines.
Cyprus’ efforts to transition to a carbon-neutral economy are dependent on RES projects, and as such, they are doomed to fail should the system continue to reject high voltages of renewable energy.
To reach its 2030 goals set by the EU, Cyprus must reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by at least 55% (compared to 1990) and achieve climate neutrality by 2050.