Cross Sectoral

Karditsa Greece


Budget: 500,000€

Public Lighting

Establishment and Support of the Energy Cooperative of Karditsa (ESEK)



The aim of ESEK is the power production using biomass. The organization of biomass supply chain is a prerequisite for this. The construction of the biomass processing unit fulfils this prerequisite. It produces standardized products from biomass (like pellets) directed to the market. The processed quantities will gradually increase, depending on the organization and the development of the supply chain to the level required by the power plant (10-12 thousand tons of appropriate biomass annually).


  • ESEK is the first collective effort at country level for the exploitation of forest biomass and agro-biomass
  • It is a “civic cooperative”, permitting the participation of all residents of Karditsa’s prefecture (or originating from it) and sharing a common vision of an energy independent prefecture
  • Today, it has more than 400 members
  • It is supported by local authorities: Chamber of Commerce, Regional Authority, Municipalities, Development Agency, Cooperative bank
  • The results until now

  • A capital of 420,000 was gathered by the contribution of the members of the cooperative
  • A piece of land 2,2 hectares has been bought
  • A dossier - application submitted by ESEK to the competent authority to get the authorization for the connection with the public power network
  • The investment of the Phase 1 is completed. Its budget was 500,000€ (it includes only the factory, not the land or running capital) and financed by LEADER program (50% public contribution and 50% self-contribution)
  • The production started in October 2017. The raw material (biomass) which is used are the residues from local saw mills
  • The discussion and negotiation with groups of interest (farmers, forest cooperatives, municipalities) is continuing
  • ESEK was transformed into Energy Community, according to the new national law 4513/2018
  • There is an ongoing planning process for an investment for a photovoltaic unit 1MW to cover the energy needs of the members (virtual net metering)


    Financing scheme:

    Contribution in the capital by citizens and local firms, Volunteer work, LEADER program, Loan by the Cooperative Bank




    • The “incubation” of the initiative
    • The credibility of the support organizations and of the involved persons
    • The success of similar initiatives (like Cooperative Bank)
    • The awareness of population on the need to use Renewable Energy Sources (RES)
    • The availability of financial tools