The production of energy from RES is one of the most dynamic and fastest growing sectors worldwide, due to:
- the urgent need for substantial increase in RES capacity, in accordance with the Kyoto Protocol
- the high RES potential (wind, hydroelectric, solar, biomass, etc.), which can be utilized under viable techno-economic terms
- the gradual exhaustion of conventional energy resources ( ie oil, natural gas)
- the availability of reliable technological solutions for the commercial utilization of the inexhaustible domestic RES resources, in an environmentally friendly manner.
The obvious benefits from the steadily growing activity in the RES sector are:
- the substantial reduction of air pollutant emissions (CO2, NOx, SO2, etc) and, subsequently, the reduction of the large adverse effects on the environment.
- the reduction of the very high dependence on conventional fuels
- the creation of a decentralised system of energy production units (production close to consumption), with beneficial effects on the safety of energy supply and on energy efficiency
- the creation of a substantial number of new employment positions, during construction, operation and maintenance of the RES units, both at the regional and the local level.
The above benefits also constituted the basis for the gradual formulation and application of a legal and financial support framework for RES, aiming at the activation of public and private initiatives in this sector. The RES framework takes into account the environmental cost (externalities) of conventional fuel technologies, as well as the established, at the national and European level, principal that the “polluter pays”.