Volkswagen delivers electric cars to help Greek island go green
Volkswagen delivered eight electric cars to Astypalea on Wednesday in a first step towards greening transport on the Greek island, a model the government hopes to extend to the rest of the country.
Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, who has made green energy a central part of Greece’s post-pandemic recovery, attended the delivery ceremony with Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess.
“Astypalea will be a test bed for the green transition: self-sufficient in energy and fully powered by nature,” Mitsotakis said.
The cars will be used by the police, the coast guard and at the local airport, the start of a larger fleet aimed at replacing around 1,500 combustion engine cars with electric models and reducing the number of cars by a third. vehicles on the island, a popular tourist destination.
The island’s bus service will be replaced by a carpooling system, 200 electric cars will be available for hire for locals and tourists, while grants will be given to the island’s 1,300 residents to purchase electric vehicles. , bikes and chargers.
Some 12 chargers have already been installed across the island and 16 more will follow.
Financial terms of the deal with Volkswagen were not disclosed.
Astypalea, which spans 100 square kilometers in the Aegean Sea, currently meets its energy demand almost entirely through diesel generators, but is expected to replace much of it with a solar power plant by 2023.
“Astypalea can become a model for rapid transformation, fostered by the close collaboration of governments and businesses,” said Diess.
Greece, which has relied on coal for decades, aims to shut down all but one coal-fired power plant by 2023, as part of its drive to boost renewables and cut carbon emissions by 55% by 2030.
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