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Serbia plans to shut down eight thermal power plant blocks by 2023

July 25, 2017

Photo: Chamber of Commerce of Serbia
Serbia plans to shut down eight thermal power plant blocks by 2023

Serbia plans to shut down eight thermal power plant blocks by 2023 and develop renewable energy capacities, but it still plans to heavily rely on the coal, the Program for Serbian Energy Strategy’s implementation in the period 2017-2013, says.

The Program for the implementation of the Energy Development Strategy of Serbia (POS) determines the conditions, method, dynamics and measures for the implementation of the the strategy which was adopted for the period until 2025 with projections until 2030.

“We have foreseen here to halt production in eight thermal power plant blocks, and, of course, to replace them with other production capacities in Serbia,” State Secretary at the Ministry of Mining and Energy Mirjana Filipović said in a discussion on the proposal for a regulation on POS for the period 2017-2023.

The possibility of shutting down of another thermal power plant block has been also considered, and this depends of the cost-effective analysis, Saša Minić from the Nikola Tesla Institute who participated in the drafting of the Strategy, said.

When it comes to new capacities, the dominant projects are the construction of seven wind farms, one combined gas and steam power plant and block B3 at Kostolac thermal power plant by the end of 2023, he added.

The Program is focused on the energy security to which is given the highest importance, then the energy market development and transition to sustainable energy as other two priorities. This document contains an overview of measurable targets and indicators, as well as a list of measures, activities and projects by areas: from electricity and heat, coal, oil and gas to renewables and enegriy efficiency.

The European Directive 347/2013 on guidelines for trans-European energy infrastructure is implemented in the document, said Filipović, adding that the Program could be revised in two years.

Transition to sustainable energy

Serbia plans to increase energy efficiency and the share of renewables, to apply new technologies in energy sector, ensuring that the environment is protected as much as possible, Minić said.

Eight objectives, 14 measures and 25 activities are defined by the program for the renewable energy sector, including increasing of renewables share in the electricity production and heating as well as in transport, with focus on the use of electric vehicles and biomass as fuel.

The main projects in this sector reffer to the construction of 500 MW wind farms, which, according to Minić, would contribute with 1.2 percentage points to the 27 percent share of renewables, Serbia’s goal for 2020.

Coal remians dominant energy source

However, coal will remain dominant energy source in the following period in Serbia.

“The issue of coal is specific for Serbia because it ensures security of energy supply. More than half of the total primary energy needed in Serbia is produced from coal,” Minić said. He added that the Energy Strategy has foreen to maintain coal production at 37 million tons annually.

Some representatives of civil sector voiced their concern during the discussion because the energy poverty reduction has not been taken into account, solar energy has not been mentioned, nor did the cost of emissions of nitrogen and sulfur oxides, land pollution, while the costs of displacement of citizens was not examined.

The report on the environment impact of the Program for the implementation of Energy Strategy for the period 2017-2023 was also presented at the gathering held in the Chamber of Commerce of Serbia.