Croatian regulations allow for building fossil fuel facilities with a heat capacity of up to 10 MW in industrial zones without a screening procedure to determine the need for an environmental impact assessment, whereas solar power plants of less than 1 MW cannot be built in the same place without a study that takes at least six months, according to Maja Pokrovac, director of the Renewable Energy Sources of Croatia association (RES Croatia).
Investors have to wait six to eight months for the required study, and some have waited as long as a year, Pokrovac said on a Croatian Radio talk show. This is despite the fact that the European Union has set renewable energy as the prevailing public interest when adopting public policies and by-laws in member states.
The EU has made renewables a priority for national public policies and by-laws
The talk show addressed the EU’s new regulations for renewable energy and the situation in Croatia in that area. Also taking part in the discussion were Ivo Milatić, State Secretary in the Ministry of Economy and Sustainable Development, Emanuel Kovačić from the Croatian Employers’ Association (HUP), and Ivo Čović from the Croatian Chamber of Economy (HGK).
Pokrovac: Grid connection rules for renewables are disastrous
Pokrovac also said that the rules for connecting renewable energy plants to the power grid in Croatia are “disastrous.” She said that investors who want to connect a power plant to the grid do not know how much energy will be taken, that they must “pay everything in advance,” and that a unit price has not yet been defined.
According to her, this means that investors who want to develop such projects cannot calculate their profitability, and that no bank will finance such a project.