Renewable power generation in Turkey has been on the rise since the nation brought in the ‘Renewable Energy Law’ back in 2005. Progress was steady in the earlier years however recently it has increased, especially after renewable energy zones were introduced in the latter part of 2016. This allowed for structural investments into renewable energy projects and has been further supported by an incentive scheme for programs which use clean energy.
Now in 2019 the laws and policies introduced by the Turkish Government seem to be paying off. The country’s minister of Energy and Natural Resources, Fatih Donmez, said in early November of this year that Turkey now produces up to 46 percent of its electricity from renewable energy sources each month and that the majority of this is made up of hydroelectricity. At the 8th Turkish wind energy congress, he went on to say that the combined renewable energy resources and local resources made up a, record, total share of 64 percent of electricity generated in the first 10 months of 2019.
This showed that turkey had, almost, met their target of generating two thirds of their own electricity in the short term from renewable energy resources and local resources. The country now aims to increase this share even higher. Donmez also stated that this wasn’t a volatile rate but steady progress is what has made Turkey obtain such promising figures and therefore they will continue on in that direction.
In 2017, the Turkish Government set a target to generated two thirds of its electricity from renewable energy sources within the next 10 years. The renewable energy sources include geothermal, solar, hydropower and wind. Turley have recently been increasing their solar power and wind outputs making the renewable energy sources account for a 48% share of the total installed capacity.
Hydropower is the largest contributor to this share. It makes up around 20 percent of the total installed capacity in Turkey and has a capacity itself of about 23 gigawatts, which is then followed by wind farms. Turkey has a total of 262 wind farms which have a net total capacity of 7.6 gigawatts, and then solar power which accounts for around 5 gigawatts. The Turkish solar energy association, Gunder, expects installation of solar photovoltaic panels to increase the capacity to 14 gigawatts by 2023 and the total solar and wind capacity to be 30 gigawatts by 2030. From October 2018 to October 2019 the generated electricity from wind power increased by 14.6% and increased an estimated 70% in the past 5 years. This makes Turkey the 6th ranked in Europe and 12th in the whole world for total installed wind energy capacity.
Turkey plans to install a further 10 gigawatts of wind power in the time period from 2017 to 2027. So far, they have installed 1.5 gigawatts of this. Turkey plan on further increasing their total renewable capacity through the introduction of the new 40-50 megawatt mini renewable energy resource zones, solar plants and wind farms. The president of the TWEA, Hakan Yildirum, has said that his group plan on supporting the intended growth in the wind energy sector so that it has at least 25 gigawatts of installed capacity by 2030.
Electricity production from the hydroelectric plants in Turkey hit record levels in the first 10 months of 2019. 67.2 billion kWh was the record amount produced in a whole year back in 2016, however from January to October of this year 79.3 billion kWh has already been generated and therefore exceeding the original record.