Croatia aims to triple wind, boost solar energy capacities 20 times in next 10 years
Croatia aims to increase its wind energy capacities by a factor of three and solar energy capacities by a factor of 20 in the next 10 years, Minister of Environmental Protection and Energy Tomislav Ćorić said at the WindEurope 2019 Conference & Exhibition, held from April 2 to 4 in Bilbao.
With wind and other renewable energy sources, Croatia will achieve the renewables share in gross energy consumption of 32% by 2030 and at least 56% by 2050, and the renewable energy transition will help reduce harmful emissions, Ćorić was quoted as saying at the opening of the conference.
The Croatian authorities believe that a further increase of investments in the green energy sector will drive the country’s development, job creation, and industrial growth, he said, according to a news release from the Renewable Energy Sources of Croatia (OIEH), a renewable energy business association.
According to Croatia’s Green Book, containing analyses for the preparation of the country’s energy sector development strategy, the country had 22 wind energy facilities with a combined installed capacity of 573 MW under the privileged producer status operational in mid-2018, with another five facilities with a total capacity of 162 MW under development and/or construction. The construction of the remaining facilities is expected to be completed by end-2020, according to the Green Book.
At the end of 2017, the country had 1,223 solar power plants with a combined installed capacity of 51.49 MW in operation and receiving incentives and another eight projects with a capacity of 1.972 MW under development/construction, according to the Green Book data.
SEE in Focus panels organized as part of WindEurope conference
At the WindEurope conference, the OIEH organized two panels as part of the South East Europe in Focus session – on system integration of wind energy in SEE and projects of common interest in SEE. The panels brought together Croatian experts and businesspeople and representatives of European institutions and global corporations, including Minister of Environmental Protection and Energy Tomislav Ćorić.
The EU plans EUR 1.3 billion in financing for cross-border cooperation on infrastructural projects in the renewables sector from 2021 to 2027, according to the news release. The financing will target onshore and offshore wind, solar, biomass, marine, and geothermal energy projects, or a combination thereof, as well as grid connection and energy storage projects.
The panel on system integration of wind energy in SEE was moderated by Neven Duić, a professor at the Department of Energy, Power Engineering and Environment of the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Naval Architecture (FSB) and president of the Zagreb-based International Centre for Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems (SDEWES Centre).
The panel on projects of common interest in SEE was moderated by OIEH Managing Director Maja Pokrovac.