Renewables

Cleaner district heating for 11 cities, municipalities in Serbia

11 cities municipalities in Serbia Cleaner district heating

Photo: Zorana Mihajlović / Facebook

Published

September 20, 2022

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Published:

September 20, 2022

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Eleven local authorities signed memorandums of understanding for decarbonization projects for district heating and cooling and energy efficiency improvements in the sector. Switzerland is donating EUR 7 million, the EU approved a EUR 3 million grant, while the EBRD is preparing a EUR 30 million loan for the purpose.

Citizens of 11 cities and municipalities in Serbia will get better quality heating and healthier environment with the introduction of renewable energy sources. The local authorities signed memorandums of understanding with the Ministry of Mining and Energy, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) for endeavors worth an overall EUR 40.5 million in the first phase.

“Both our countries are facing challenges when it comes to lowering greenhouse gas emissions and we are trying to increase the share of renewable energy sources that we use to produce energy. I am pleased that together we succeeded – Serbia, the EU and my government – and this is a great potential for the decarbonization of the economy,” Swiss Ambassador to Serbia Urs Schmid said at the signing ceremony in Kragujevac, as quoted by the Ministry of Mining and Energy.

His country earmarked an EUR 8.5 million grant for the ReDE Serbia project.

Project is even more significant due to crisis

“A year ago, when we started the project, we thought it was important and innovative, while today the project’s significance is even greater, in the light of the crisis. This will be an example of how we can accelerate the energy transition, improve energy security and improve air quality,” said the EBRD’s Director for the Western Balkans and Head of Serbia Matteo Colangeli. The international financial institution is supposed to provide a EUR 30 million loan.

The funds should be utilized to enable the implementation of innovative renewable district energy technologies such as heat pumps, geothermal, solar thermal, biogas, biomass and waste heat from wastewater treatment plants and other industrial sources, according to Colangeli. They will be used for the first time in South East Europe, he added.

This will be an example of how we can accelerate the energy transition, improve energy security and improve air quality, said Matteo Colangeli from the EBRD

The European Union set aside EUR 3 million for a grant. District heating systems will be upgraded in Bečej, Bogatić, Vrbas, Vršac, Kragujevac, Kraljevo, Kruševac, Niš, Novi Pazar, Pančevo and Paraćin.

Mihajlović: All projects to be finished within four years

The production of heat in Serbia will increase 3.5 times to 197 GWh per year, together with a decrease in carbon dioxide emissions by 25,000 tons, Serbia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Mining and Energy Zorana Mihajlović stressed.

“Each ton, each less kilogram of gases and particles means a greater quality of life. Every kilowatt-hour obtained from RES means we are more energy secure,” she pointed out. All the projects will be finished within four years, so local authorities will be able to use renewable sources for district heating like the municipalities of Priboj and Mali Zvornik and the city of Novi Pazar, Mihajlović asserted.

Kragujevac replaced its boilers with the government’s help and it is just a start, Mayor Nikola Dašić said. With the ReDE Serbia project, the country’s fourth-largest city will start using waste heat from the Government Data Centre and build a biomass-fueled boiler for district heating.

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