The long-awaited official initiation of the Turkey component of the COBENEFITS project in mid-February was crowned with the first gathering of the COBENEFITS Council – the inter-ministerial consultative body that is expected to provide guidance and ensure relevance, applicability and political ownership of the project and its outputs.
Representatives from the Ministry of Economics, Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources and the Ministry of Environment and Urbanization honoured this first Council meeting, the premier agenda item of which was the identification of priority co-benefits of renewable power generation in Turkey.
After an intense afternoon of productive and lively debates, energy supply security, economic prosperity, sustainable employment, trade opportunities and improving the quality of life of citizens have been identified as the main co-benefit areas that could be delivered by increasing share of renewables in Turkey’s power mix. Turkey’s efforts to ensure sustainable development of renewable energy technologies and the importance of a comprehensive understanding of co-benefits of renewables in order to sustain political support for wind, solar and other renewable energy technologies were highlighted during the discussions.
The next step in the project timeline is the conduct of capacity needs assessments and research needs assessments in order to inform the co-benefits analyses and training activities that will be delivered in the next couple of years.