Energy in Turkey

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Location of Turkey
Wind farm in Turkey

Turkey consumes 1700 terawatt hours (TW/h) of primary energy per year, a little over 20 megawatt hours (MW/h) per person: most energy is imported fossil fuels but policy is to reduce that proportion, including by generating more electricity in the west to match demand.


Since 1990 annual primary energy consumption has almost tripled to 1700 TW/h[note 1] in 2016; including 31% oil, 28% gas and 27% coal;[1] and CO2 emissions from fuel combustion have risen from 130 megatonnes (Mt) to 340 Mt.[2] Almost all fossil fuel apart from lignite (brown coal) is imported. Turkey's energy policy prioritises reducing imports.

Electricity is generated mainly from coal, gas (about a third each) and hydro (about a quarter) with a small but growing amount from other renewables such as wind and solar.[3] Nuclear power plants are under construction.



Turkey produces a lot of lignite, almost all of which is burnt in power stations,[4] which churns out large amounts of carbon dioxide with a comparably low level of efficiency. Government subsidises coal-fired power stations despite the environmental impact of the coal industry and would like more to be built.


Annual gas demand is 50bcm[5], over 30% of Turkey’s total energy demand, and over half of which is supplied by Russia.[6] All 81 provinces in Turkey are supplied with natural gas,[7] which supplies most of the heat.[8]

With the TurkStream pipeline from Russia still under construction currently most gas comes from Russia via the Blue Stream pipeline. Iranian gas comes through the Tabriz–Ankara pipeline. Azerbaijan supplies Turkey through the Trans-Anatolian gas pipeline (which they claim is the cheapest that Turkey buys[9]) and South Caucasus Pipeline. Iraq may also supply gas in future, through the Southern Gas Corridor[10] and gas from the Eastern Mediterranean is also a possibility.[6]

Also 16.5% of gas is imported as LNG, which together with storage is important for meeting the winter demand peak.[6]

At the moment only a small proportion of gas imports are re-exported to the EU. However Turkey aims to become a gas trading hub in 2018[11] and more re-export more.[5] State-owned BOTAŞ controls 80% of the market[12] 91 mt of CO2 were emitted by burning natural gas in 2015.[13]


Almost all oil is imported: mostly from Iraq, Iran and Russia[14] and oil also transits from Azerbajan.[15] 92 mt of CO2 were emitted by burning oil in 2015.[13]


Turkey has no operational nuclear reactors, but it is building a nuclear power plant at Akkuyu, with expected operation in 2023.

Renewable energy[edit]

Hydroelectricity in Turkey is the largest renewable source of electricity however solar power looks likely to increase rapidly. Wind power in Turkey is mainly in the west.

EU and Turkey Wind Energy Capacity (MW)[16][17][18][19]
No Country 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 1998
- EU-27 117,289 106,040 93,957 84,074 74,767 64,712 56,517 48,069 40,511 34,383 28,599 23,159 17,315 12,887 9,678 6,453
28 Turkey 2,956 2,312 1,691 1,329 801 458 140 19

Geothermal power in Turkey is used mainly for heating.

By massively increasing production of solar power in the south and wind power in the west Turkey could meet its entire predicted 2020 energy demand from renewable sources.[20]


In October 2018 the government forecast electricity demand of 317 TWh for 2019.[21] However in 2018 Turkey produced and consumed about 300 TWh[22] so that forecast would be a 5% increase with the economy predicted for recession, and in the past several demand forecasts have been overestimates. Only about 1% is imported or exported.[23] Prices on the wholesale market are controlled by the state electricity generation company, and prices to end consumers are regulated.[24]


According to the Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, Turkey has the potential to cut 15 to 20 percent of total consumption through energy conservation.[25]


With the increase in electricity generated by solar panels storage may become more important.

Thermal energy storage[edit]

Testing in Ankara suggested a payback time between 18 months and 3 years for adding ice thermal storage to hypermarket cooling systems.[26]


Turkey could generate 20% of its total electricity from wind and solar by 2026 without extra transmission system costs.[27]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Production + imports - exports from top right of IEA table in the citation. 1 Mtoe = 11.63 TWh


  • Godron, Philipp and Mahmut Erkut Cebeci and Osman Bülent Tör and Değer Saygın (2018). "Increasing the Share of Renewables in Turkey's Power System:Options for Transmission Expansion and Flexibility" (PDF). SHURA Energy Transition Center. ISBN 978-605-2095-22-5.
  1. ^ "Total Primary Energy Supply (TPES) by source:Turkey". IEA. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  2. ^ "CO2 emissions Turkey". IEA. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  3. ^ "Electricity generation by fuel: Turkey". IEA. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  4. ^ "Overview of coal in Turkey and environmental precautions" (PDF). TKI. Retrieved 24 October 2018.
  5. ^ a b "From A Pipeline Nation To An Energy Trading Hub". Retrieved 26 October 2018.
  6. ^ a b c "TURKSTREAM IMPACT ON TURKEY'S ECONOMY AND ENERGY SECURITY" (PDF). "Istanbul Economics" & "The Center for Economics and Foreign Policy" - EDAM. Retrieved 26 October 2018.
  7. ^ "Natural Gas Distribution". Gazbir. Retrieved 27 September 2018.
  8. ^ "Turkey: Electricity and heat for 2016". IEA. Retrieved 24 November 2018.
  9. ^ "TANAP gas to provide cheapest among Turkey's imports". Daily Sabah. 30 May 2018.
  10. ^ "Azerbaijan offers Iraq access to Europe gas pipelines". Agence France Presse.
  11. ^ "EXIST To Open Spot Natural Gas Market At End Of Year".
  12. ^ "Turkish households consumed cheapest natural gas in Europe in 2017". Daily Sabah. 12 August 2018.
  13. ^ a b "CO2 emissions from fuel combustion" (PDF). International Energy Agency. Retrieved 26 October 2018.
  14. ^ "Turkey's crude oil imports from Iran down by more than 70 pct in June". 19 August 2018.
  15. ^ "Turkish energy sector hit by lira depreciation: MUFG research". S & P Global. 7 August 2018.
  16. ^ EWEA Staff (2010). "Cumulative installed capacity per EU Member State 1998 - 2009 (MW)". European Wind Energy Association. Retrieved 2010-05-22.
  17. ^ EWEA Staff (February 2011). "EWEA Annual Statistics 2010" (PDF). European Wind Energy Association. Retrieved 2011-01-31.
  18. ^ EWEA Staff (February 2012). "EWEA Annual Statistics 2011" (PDF). European Wind Energy Association. Retrieved 2011-02-18.
  19. ^ Wind in power: 2012 European statistics February 2013
  20. ^ "How is 100% Renewable Energy Possible for Turkey by 2020?" (PDF). Global Energy Network Institute.
  21. ^ "Afşin-Elbistan Termik Santral yatırımı, Cumhurbaşkanlığı 2019 Yılı Programı'nda Yer Aldı". Elbistan Kaynarca. 30 October 2018.
  22. ^ "ElectricityShare:". Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources (Turkey). Retrieved 24 November 2018.
  23. ^ "Turkish energy sector hit by lira depreciation: MUFG research". S & P Global. 17 August 2018.
  24. ^ "Turkish lira tumble triggers electricity curtailment fears". ICIS. 13 August 2018.
  25. ^ "Turkey Promotes Energy Conservation".
  26. ^ Erdemir, Dogan; Altuntop, Necdet (12 January 2018). "Effect of encapsulated ice thermal storage system on cooling cost for a hypermarket". International Journal of Energy Research.
  27. ^ Shura2018, page 6