Six projects worth a combined EUR 7.1 million for the use of renewable energy received financing under the RO06 Renewable Energy Program (Rondine). This program was funded as part of the European Economic Area-EEA Grants 2009 – 2014.
Rondine program was designed to finance the sustainable use of natural resources and the cut of greenhouse gas emissions by capitalizing on renewable energy sources, specifically on the hydropower and geothermal potential which was the focus of all six projects.
Projects that received funds are a geothermal plant in Oradea for representing a new thermal energy production capacity for the Emergency Hospital; Prof. Dr. Agrippa lonescu for 8 research studies on the implementation of completed hydropower pilot projects, over 100 participants in geothermal workshops and short courses; students who completed the six-month course of the United Nations University Geothermal Training Program in Iceland, a pre-feasibility study on the geothermal heating system in Oradea; and a pre-feasibility study on the geothermal heating system in Beius.
Cornel Brezuica, president of the Environmental Fund Administration (AFM), operator of the Rondine program, said that Romania stays among the world’s most attractive renewable energies market and runs high chances to become an important energy actor in the region.
“In recent years, AFM has financed from the Environmental Fund programs that have boosted the implementation and use of renewable energy sources for the installation of solar panels, wind farms, solar, biogas or biomass power plants, hydro and geothermal power plants”, said Brezuica.
He added that EEA and Norway grants are an important tool for the development of key sectors such as Romania’s economy and society, the protection of the environment, strengthening civil society, the judiciary, the promotion of energy efficiency and renewable energy, public health services.
He emphasized that Romania’s micro-hydropower and geothermal potential can provide the most important sources of renewable energy, in line with EU requirements.
The hydropower component of the Rondine program aimed to achieve initial investment and refurbishment of hydropower plants, with the purpose of extending the production capacity of electricity from renewable sources. It was open for public and private commercial entities.
The geothermal component was to achieve initial investments and reengineering of the thermal energy production plant that use geothermal energy, for the purpose of extending (increasing) the capacity for thermal energy production from renewable sources. Eligible applicants are local administrative units and or authorities, in addition to public or private commercial entities and/or local administrative units/authorities.
Allocation of the financing, based on the initial financial arrangement was as follows: 85 percent through the European Economic Area Financial Mechanism 2009 – 2014 and 15 percent from the state budget (Environmental Fund).