New renewables law in Serbia limits connection capacity to keep grid stable

New renewables law Serbia limits connection capacity grid stable

Photo: MrRenewables Westmill Solar Co-operative Neil Maw /


April 29, 2023



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April 29, 2023



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The new Law on the Use of Renewable Energy Sources is coming into force. Minister of Mining and Energy of Serbia Dubravka Đedović said the new framework enables auctions for electricity from new capacities.

The National Assembly of Serbia passed the changes to the Law on the Use of Renewable Energy Sources. One of the rules is that investors will be able to avoid grid operators delaying the connection of their power plants to the grid if they add battery storage systems.

The proposed limitations to photovoltaic capacity for households and firms that want to become prosumers has caused controversies. Eventually, a decision was made to make the ceilings higher than initially planned. Minister of Mining and Energy Dubravka Đedović asserted that a compromise was achieved – the maximum for households was set to 10.8 kW while businesses will be able to install up to 5 MW, but only until July next year, when the limit will be lowered to just 150 kW.

With the new framework, limits are imposed on renewable energy capacities that can be connected to the electricity network to avoid distribution and transmission network overloads

Grid overloads amid a lack of capacity and the variability of renewable energy production are increasing the challenges for the countries of Southeastern Europe and beyond, as does the need for balancing energy. Its role is to make up for shortfalls in forecasted output, especially for wind and solar power plants.

Among the new provisions, the distribution system operator – state-owned utility Elektrodistribucija Srbije – must limit the connected renewables capacity to 80% of the capacity of the substation at the point of delivery of electricity to the transmission system. The ceiling applies for substations of up to 16 MW. Prosumers, legally defined as buyers-producers, aren’t included in the calculation.

Developers will be able to avoid grid operators delaying the connection of their power plants to the grid if they add battery storage systems

Power plants above 10 MW that use intermittent sources can’t be connected to the distribution network (low-voltage system), but only to the transmission grid, according to the new Law on the Use of Renewable Energy Sources.

The Government of Serbia argued that it is necessary to integrate more grid energy while ensuring the stability of the electricity system at the same time. Minister Đedović said the changes enable auctions for new renewable energy capacities.

The new rules protect the supplier of last resort, government-owned company Elektroprivreda Srbije, from the financial risk of balancing responsibility for all renewable electricity producers, the ministry pointed out. The law kept the obligation only for privileged producers that entered the incentives system and for a limited period.

Big industrial producers will be able to exercise their right to self-consumption through the active buyer concept when the Law on Energy is changed, according to the Ministry of Mining and Energy.

The new regulations should contribute to the optimization of investments in the household sector in accordance with a realistic level of annual consumption and to discourage them from using electricity for heating when it is the most expensive, the statement adds.

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