CLIMATE EMERGENCY

State will subsidize replacement of old electrical appliances

State will subsidize replacement of old electrical appliances

A €100 million subsidy program will help some 200,000 households to replace old refrigerators, freezers and air-conditioning units with newer, energy-saving appliances.

The program is expected to be implemented by mid-year and will involve a state subsidy ranging from 30%-50% of the cost of a new electrical appliance, depending on household income.

Environment and Energy Minister Kostas Skrekas, who announced details of the subsidy program Saturday, said that households, and the economy at large, will benefit from energy savings. The program, he said, could be expanded, depending on demand.

Specifically, the ministry estimates that over 380,000 old-technology appliances will be replaced. Each household will consume about 1,000 kilowatt-hours (kWh) annually, about 20% of the energy consumption of an average household, translating to savings of €150-€300 on electricity bills. This will mean the country will need to produce about 209,000 megawatt-hours energy less per year, reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 126,000 tons annually, the ministry estimates. Further, the country will need to import less natural gas and oil for its power generation needs; the annual cost savings are estimated at between €15 million and €27 million.

Interested households will be able to apply only at a dedicated website or straight to electric appliance retailers. The subsidy, which will be automatically computed on the basis of income, will take the form of a discount coupon. The old appliances will be recycled. The online platform will also monitor all stages of implementation.

In case of high demand, the government will consider expanding the program.

“Under difficult circumstances of steeply rising electricity prices due to the global energy crisis, we help households, besides the direct subsidies on electricity bills, to permanently reduce their energy costs by replace old, energy-consuming electrical appliances. People eligible to take part will see their total energy costs go down nearly €40 million annually. The new program will also contribute to mitigating the energy crisis, as it will lead to a reduction of carbon dioxide emissions by 126,000 tons annually,” said Skrekas.