Old power plants with a total capacity of 1.2 GW are due to be shut down in Croatia, and the state electricity distribution system currently controls 3.65 GW, energy expert Marijan Kalea told Novi list newspaper. With economic recovery, energy needs would rise, so at least 2 GW may be missing by 2020, he claims, including possible 1 GW from the rise in consumption. The country is in the same position it was five years ago, because of long negotiations with Marubeni Corporation of Japan, which was supposed to build the 500 MW thermal power plant Plomin C, while the construction of a 68 MW hydro power facility Ombla near Dubrovnik is out of sight, gas-powered generation unit of 500 MW in Osijek is still in its early stage, and a plan for a thermal power plant in Ploče was opposed by citizens on a referendum, Kalea added. Old thermal power units including Sisak, Rijeka, Plomin 1 and TE-TO Osijek need to be shut down by January 1, 2018 because of excess emissions, he said. New capacities were supposed to be launched by now, Kalea stressed and added that the strategic investments legislation did make permit issuing quicker but that the efforts were insufficient.
The only new power plant launched in the last two and a half decades is the five-year old Lešće hydro unit of 42 MW, while all other projects are only for upgrading and reconstructing existing generation capacities, the report said. HEP Group (Hrvatska elektroprivreda), the national power company, controls seven thermal and 26 hydro power plants, Novilist.hr said.