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Bioland Energy Group holds workshop on RES and agrivoltaic systems

An informative workshop on renewable energy sources (RES), focusing on the potential of agrivoltaic systems in Cyprus, was held on 1 December 2023 by Bioland Energy Group, a member of the Eptagon Group, one of Cyprus’ largest solar energy companies.

The aim of the workshop was to highlight issues related to delays seen in Cyprus in terms of developing RES, despite our country’s EU obligations. According to what was heard during the workshop, the EU expects Cyprus to raise the share of renewable energy in its overall energy consumption to 42.5%, at a time when our country's RES penetration for 2023 is estimated at about 24%.

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As Bioland Energy Group’s Licensing Director, George Varnava, mentioned during his presentation, the installation of photovoltaic and agrivoltaic systems is an ideal way to achieve Cyprus’ green energy targets. In particular, as far as agrivoltaics are concerned, they are a promising solution, which combines the use of agricultural land and the production of solar energy. Such systems boast multiple benefits for the agriculture sector, and this can be seen through their deployment in other countries. Among other things, they have the potential to increase the yield of agricultural crops, reduce water consumption and fuel consumption costs for irrigation, provide protection from adverse weather conditions (such as hail), while producing green energy.

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Agrivoltaics

The workshop was attended by the Minister of Agriculture, Rural Development and Environment, Petros Xenofontos, the Chairmen of the House Committees of Agriculture and Energy, Yiannakis Gavriel and Kyriakos Hadjiyiannis, the Mayor of Aradippou, Evangelos Evangelides, representatives of agricultural organizations as well as representatives of the relevant services of competent ministries.

In his speech, Bioland Energy Group CEO, Demetris Constantinides, referred to the need to strengthen Cyprus’ green energy production. On his part, welcoming the workshop, the chairman of the House Committee on Agriculture, Yiannakis Gavriel, expressed the wish that actions will be taken that will help us, as a state, wean ourselves off fossil fuels. He highlighted that the penalties that Cyprus pays for exceeding the EU’s emission targets – which may be over €500m in 2024 – are inexcusable and should not be tolerated by society.

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In his address, the Chairman of the House Committee on Energy, Trade, Industry and Tourism, Kyriakos Hadjiyiannis, underlined that Cyprus has fallen sorely behind in its targets and obligations for energy production from renewable sources, underlining the need for a quick transition to a green economy and an open electricity market.

Representatives of agriculture organisations welcomed the significant benefits of agrivoltaics, pointing out that they expect their implementation to significantly help Cyprus’ agriculture sector, as it will allow farmers to simultaneously produce renewable energy and cultivate their crops.

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