Renewables

Hidroelectrica to install battery at its loss-making Crucea Nord wind farm

Hidroelectrica install battery at its loss making Crucea Nord wind farm

Photo: Enrique from Pixabay

Published

July 27, 2023

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Published:

July 27, 2023

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Romania’s Hidroelectrica is preparing to integrate a 1.2 MW battery system with its only wind power plant to help it meet a balancing requirement.

After listing at the Bucharest Stock Exhange via a stellar initial public offering, the largest electricity producer in Romania is working on obtaining permits to install an energy storage system at its Crucea Nord wind farm in the Dobruja (Dobrogea) province in the country’s east. Profit.ro reported, citing Hidroelectrica’s official documentation, that the purpose is to meet the primary control reserve requirement.

The battery storage unit is expected to help lower the imbalances between the forecasted and achieved output

The facility has 108 MW in capacity. Hidroelectrica bought its only wind farm more than two years ago from Germany-based Steag for EUR 130 million, the article adds.

The hydropower plant operator opted for a lithium-ion battery of 1.2 MW. The investment is estimated at EUR 1.2 million excluding value-added tax or over EUR 1.4 million in total.

The battery storage unit is expected to help lower the imbalances between the forecasted and achieved output, the state-owned company said. Combining power plants that use different energy sources or adding storage to one makes the integrated facility a hybrid power plant.

Hidroelectrica achieved a 34% jump in profit in the first quarter from the same period of last year

In the project files, the utility noted that due to regulations and technical requirements it must constantly operate Crucea Nord at 99% and that the reserve share, part of balancing activities, is 1%. It caused losses of more than EUR 1.9 million in total from 2015 through 2022, Hidroelectrica pointed out.

In addition, it revealed that last year Crucea Nord produced 298.8 GWh, but that it was obligated to deliver 364.6 GWh and cover the difference by purchasing electricity in the market.

Hidroelectrica’s total revenues grew 31% to EUR 664 million year over year in the first quarter, compared to the rise in net income of 34% to EUR 349.6 million.

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