Energy Community Of Karditsa (ESEK)
Energy Community of Karditsa (ESEK) is a profit citizen energy cooperative. It was established in 2010 to fulfil the vision and reward the efforts of more than 350 members. The main purpose was to foster renewable energy in the region. In 2019, according to the provisions of the law 4513/2018 and following the unanimous decision of the General Assembly, the Energy Cooperative was converted into an Energy Community. Members of the community are municipalities, SMEs, associations (estimated 8%) and citizens. ESEK operates in Thessaly, an area with strong agricultural production. The continuous expansion of the local fossil fuel network threatens the uptake of RE heating solutions such as biomass boilers. At the same time, the region has a great biomass supply chain potential through agricultural, forestry and wood processing industries that can easily support the uptake of bioenergy technologies. The main activity of the Energy Community is related to the management of a biomass plant for the production of solid biofuels to generate energy for heating (or cooling) purposes. The first phase of the investment project has accomplished, an Energy Community with a solid biofuel plant which can set up the value chain for the local community. A manufacturing unit for processing and standardizing local biomass and converting it into a commercial form, such as pellets, has been created. The raw material for pellet production consists of industrial residuals (sawmills) such as sawdust woodchips and logging residues such as branches, tops and stumps, coming from Forest Cooperatives. Partnerships with local authorities allow the Energy Community to expand the supply chain with plant biomass coming from Municipal waste (branches and tops of city trees).
TIMELINE OF ENERGY COMMUNITY OF KARDITSA
ESTABLISMENT OF KARDITSA ENERGY COOPERATIVE: An initiative of commercial chamber and agency development of Karditsa (AN.KA) that aligned with the hopes and ideas of several citizens of Karditsa. A simple idea of the exploitation of the local resources was the motive to join more than 200 members. πλούτου ήταν η αφορμή για να συμμετέχουν περισσότερα από 200 υδρευτικά μέλη!!!
THE CREATION OF A SOLID BIOFUEL ENTERPRISE: On 23th of October 2012, the first step was decided. The creation of a pellet plant in order to process and standardize the residual biomass and create a local value chain in the region, reduce energy poverty and increase the job creation.
PELLET PRODUCTION: The use of European tools such as LEADER+ and the financial support of the cooperative bank of Karditsa set in motion the production of pellet. The community cooperates as a priority with its own members (technicians, engineers, biomass suppliers, fuel companies etc) in order to create a reliable and solid supply chain.
2019 ENERGY COMMUNITY: The cooperative was transformed into an Energy Community in accordance with the provisions of Law 4513/2018. Since 2019 all six municipalities participate in the community and together planning the next steps regarding the exploitation of the local resources and renewables.
THE ROLE OF AN ESCO: With the support of the European project BECoop, a new activity has been developed. A biomass boiler installed in a kindergarten and the community supply direct renewable heating. The municipality and the energy community intended to further install biomass boilers to municipal structures and reduce the carbon footprint of the municipality.
FREE SOLAR PROJECT: A residential self-consumption installation can provide free energy from the sun that can reduce the energy bill by hundreds of euros annually. FREE SOLAR will allow consumers and small or medium-sized enterprises to self-finance the cost of their PV installation without any capital expenditure, based on savings generated by the PV installation once it is functional and generate free solar energy for over 25 years! Our ambition is to provide solar energy to every Greek citizen and help our country to stop climate change, while contributing to the creation of a fair solar economy for all. We are starting with our first pilot FREE SOLAR program in the Region of Thessaly and soon we will be near you in other regions of Greece!
VIRTUAL NET METERING 1.2 MW: In January of 2023 an application was made for the creation of a PV park for the members of the community in order to cover their electricity demands through virtual net metering.
The ambition of BECoop is to provide the necessary conditions and technical as well as business support tools for unlocking the underlying market potential of community bioenergy, fostering new links and partnerships.
The project BECoop has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 952930. The sole responsibility for the content of this website lies with the authors. It does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the European Union. Neither the European Commission nor any person acting on behalf of the Commission is responsible for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.