Bulgaria will continue to rely on coal-based electricity production2. March 2020. / SEE Energy News
Bulgarian Minister of Energy Temenuzhka Petkova said after the meeting with the representatives of the two trade unions that, in accordance with its national plan, Bulgaria will continue producing electricity in its coal-based thermal power plants during the next decade
The Confederation of Independent Trade Unions in Bulgaria (CITUB) and the Podkrepa Workers Union oppose the abolishment of state aid for coal-fired power plants after 2025 and transferring national income collected from the sale of emission allowances to the joint European Union fund. Their representatives say the target to cut emissions from 1990 levels cannot exceed 45 %. The EU’s objective for greenhouse gases has been lifted to between 50 % and 55 % from 40 %.
Minister Petkova said the country’s coal sector would be protected, adding that the European Green Deal has a price, which will be reflected in changes in all parts of the economy. The National Energy and Climate Plan (NECP) clearly states that coal-fired power plants will be in operation until 2030, with a horizon of 2050. At the moment, Bulgaria generates between 40 and 60 % of its electricity in these power plants.
However, she sees two problems with the EU’s so-called Green Deal. Neighboring non-EU countries like Turkey and North Macedonia will continue to produce electricity from coal and use natural gas and they won’t have expenses for emission allowances, while their polluted air will continue to come to Bulgaria. The second issue is the closure of base electricity capacities in the region. Minister Petkova claimed that 12 GW in Bulgaria, Greece and Romania will have to be closed by 2030. Thus, the region is facing a serious deficit of base electricity capacities.
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