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Accepted Paper:

Procedural Dimensions of Wind Farm Expansion in Greece: between “sustainable” energy politics and environmental injustice.  
Artemis Koumparelou (University of Leipzig)

Paper short abstract:

In the context of low-carbon energy transition in Greece, claims of socio-environmental injustice contradict official pronouncements about sustainability. Examining both 1. the institutional framework on RES and 2. a large-scale wind farm case study, procedural justice is strongly questioned.

Paper long abstract:

Over the last years wind farms are proliferating across Greece and are being promoted by the central policy as the sustainable solution for climate change mitigation. At the same time, the development of large-scale renewable energy projects under market-based governance raises questions about the uneven distribution of economic and environmental costs and benefits and about the insufficient inclusion of local communities in the decision-making process. This paper focuses on the procedural aspects of the state-led wind park expansion in Greece and examines the role of local and societal actors in the policy-making and planning processes, through a parallel analysis of the institutional framework and the case study of a large-scale wind park within protected natural sites on the island of Ikaria. Drawing upon political ecology and environmental justice literature (Swyngedouw; Walker; Apostolopoulou) the dimension of procedural justice is highlighted and Agyeman’s concept of “just sustainability” is introduced. Following this understanding, the paper investigates to what extent state-promoted wind park expansion in Ikaria is in line with sustainability and environmental justice principles. The main research methodology is the document review of the key legislation and regulatory framework for RES in Greece with emphasis on the governance and procedural aspects (decision-making and licensing procedures, public deliberations etc.), supplemented by review of the local press for the examination of the emerging socio-environmental conflict in Ikaria. The aim is to stress the active involvement of local communities in decision-making processes as a crucial factor in building equitable energy transition systems.

Panel P40
Just energy transitions from the ground up. Decoloniality and renewable energy transitions
  Session 2 Thursday 29 June, 2023, -