More wind power harnessed in Thrace

Deputy Development Minister Giorgos Salagoudis on Saturday inaugurated a major extension to Greece’s biggest wind power park, totaling a capacity of 62.5 megawatts, near Kehros in the Rhodope district of Thrace. «I think the aggressive policy on renewable energy sources on which our government has decided is developing very well and I believe in a short time we will have tapped a very significant part of the country’s wind potential,» he said. The extension adds a capacity of 10.8MW to the park, which is owned by Damco Energy and Diethnis Kataskevastiki of the Kopelouzos and Samaras groups. It comprises 71 wind power generators extending over a mountain range 30 kilometers long. The cost of the project was 70 million euros, with partial funding from the National Bank of Greece. Dimitris Kopelouzos, president of the group of the same name, said the park can meet the power needs of a town of 60,000 families. A fossil fuel power station producing this energy emits 150,000 tons of carbon dioxide a year. Oil pipeline Separately, Kopelouzos said the oil pipeline planned to connect the ports of Burgas on the Black Sea with Alexandroupolis in Thrace, for which a memorandum of cooperation was due to be signed by Russia, Greece and Bulgaria in Sofia this week and in which his group has a stake, will be constructed with the highest specifications for safety and environmental protection. On Saturday, Bulgarian Public Works Minister Valentin Cerovski said the signing of the memorandum had been postponed at the request of Russian Industry and Energy Minister Viktor Christenko, who is accompanying President Putin on a visit to Turkey.