Press Releases & Announcements


EDA THESS remains on growth track - Interview of the General Manager, Mr. Leonidas Bakouras

Mr. Leonidas Bakouras, General Manager of the Natural Gas Distribution Company of Thessaloniki - Thessaly (EDA THESS), talks about the company's growth track despite the challenges of 2022, outlines the Company’s investment plan until 2026 and analyzes the role of natural gas and renewable gases in the energy transition.

  1. What has been the course of EDA THESS and the Natural Gas Market during this rough period for the energy sector?

The 22-year history of EDA THESS proves the timeless trust and the consistent preference of consumers to an eco-friendly, safe and easy-to-use form of energy, resulting in the penetration of natural gas in Thessaloniki and Thessaly reaching today 70% of the population. 

2022 has been an extremely difficult year for the natural gas market. However, the Company managed to overcome challenges and maintain its growth trajectory.

New Connection Contracts exceeded 12,000 to date and distributed volumes reached 363.4 million Nm3, increased by 2% compared to 356.3 million Nm3 in the corresponding period of 2021. It is worth noting that in the midst of the energy crisis, more than 16 industries and production units signed contracts with EDA THESS, for quantities reaching 60 million Nm3 annually and investments to be implemented in 2023 and 2024.

At the same time, EDA THESS consistently continues the implementation of its Development Program, having already invested €23.2 million until today, while for the whole of 2022 planned investments are expected to reach €33.6 million.

The success of EDA THESS is founded on robust organization, rigorous planning and commitment to goals. The Company builds sustainable high-standard infrastructures with due respect for people and the environment, strictly complying with the legal and regulatory framework.

Another innovation of the Company is the installation of the 1st satellite Liquefied Natural Gas gasification station in Greece, designed and implemented by EDA THESS in adherence to the highest design standards and the strictest safety specifications. This is the Station that supplies the remote network of ​​Elassona in the Region of Thessaly, making use of the virtual interconnection through LNG land transport. Aiming to increase Natural Gas penetration and secure License areas, the virtual CNG pipeline and now the virtual LNG interconnection enable the Company to meet the demands of more and more consumers.

  1. What does the Development Program of EDA THESS include for the coming years?

Despite the challenges affecting the energy sector, the Company has drawn up a large-scale investment plan setting realistic goals for the five-year period of 2022-2026. The new Development Program submitted to RAE and subject to public consultation, provides for total investments of €223.7 million by 2026.

This amount is to be allocated as follows:

  • €174.9 million for medium and low-pressure network development
  • €22.2 million for the digitalization of infrastructure and the installation of smart meters
  • • 14.3 for the integration of renewable gases
  • • €10.9 million for digital transformation
  • • €1.4 million for equipment and for upgrading the energy efficiency of the infrastructures


At the same time, at the core of the Development Planning of EDA THESS lies the completion of infrastructure digitalization, that will maximize the environmental benefit of the networks, while ensuring that energy is supplied safely and in the most cost-effective way to the end consumers. At the same time, it offers many tangible advantages, such as the installation of smart meters, the possibility of remote control of the network, the strengthening of operation and maintenance through preventive checks, and the monitoring of critical parameters such as odorization levels and gas pressure.


  1. What is the role of natural gas and renewable gases in the energy transition and what actions need to be taken to harness their potential?

Natural gas will remain as the main fuel that will drive the smooth transition to Renewables (biomethane, hydrogen) in the coming years. The first and realistic step is the further penetration of natural gas and the replacement of polluting conventional fuels.

The REPowerEU plan envisages a number of actions to diversify natural gas supply sources, save energy and further develop renewable energy sources.

The injection of biomethane into the distribution networks is a challenge for Greece that will yield a triple benefit for the country. First of all, it will contribute to the 35 bcm biomethane target set under the REpowerEU Plan to diversify supply sources. The biggest advantage of biomethane is its direct compatibility with the existing distribution networks and in particular with those of EDA THESS, which extend to 32 Municipalities.

The initial step is to establish the legal framework for the licensing and operation of biomethane production facilities and subsequently, additions to the secondary legislation should be promoted to include the distribution of biomethane and renewable gases in the main activity of the Operators.

This model can later be replicated for "green hydrogen", so that Gas Distribution Network Operators collect and channel decentralized hydrogen production from "small-scale" electrolytes into their networks. EDA THESS is studying and planning investments for the upgrade and repurposing of its infrastructure aiming at gradually injecting and integrating renewable hydrogen into its distribution network.

EDA THESS, being a member of the GD4S (Gas Distributors for Sustainability), that is the leading organization representing the voice of Gas Distribution System Operators in Europe, is actively involved in the consultations on the establishment of the European energy framework for the benefit of European consumers.