Expert: Turkey Needs Wind, Solar for Energy Security


Photo: EMD International A/G via RenewableEnergyWorld.com

Though the dispute between Russia and Ukraine, in which the former cut off the latter's gas supply, left Turkey relatively unaffected, the stories of people freezing in neighboring Bulgaria should not go unheeded. Turkey, dependent on Russia for 65 percent of its natural gas -- a major source of power as well as heat -- needs to diversify its energy sources, the chief economist of the International Energy Agency warned recently.

Responding to the news that a Russian-Turkish consortium would likely be allowed to build Turkey's first nuclear power plant, Faith Birol told Reuters that his home country's "dependence will increase further if Russia is preferred for nuclear. A variety of fuel is needed as an alternative to natural gas." His recommendation? Renewables.

Strong Wind And Solar Potential
"The capacity increases in wind and solar energy in the EU and the U.S. will reduce costs," Birol said. "This is good news for Turkey because it will support possible investments here."

Despite increasing energy demand and lots of potential -- the country gets plenty of sunshine and has three coastal borders where the wind blows regularly -- renewables haven't gotten much traction in Turkey. But savvy entrepreneurs are starting to make the investments needed to change that.

Energy Entrepreneurs
The first Turkish company to make large wind turbines, Model Enerji, was founded early last year, and plans to have its first turbines up and running in October. Other energy providers are targeting the breezy Çesme peninsula for wind power plants, while Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan spoke recently about the possibility of importing hydropower technology from Norway. Via: "Turkey should promote wind, solar investment - IEA," Climate Ark/Reuters

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Tags: Alternative Energy | Energy | Renewable Energy | Solar Energy | Turkey | Wind Power

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