Romania: Clear coal phase-out strategy necessary

, SEE Energy News

Romanian government should set by law a deadline for phasing-out coal from the energy mix, with a significant financial package attached to this deadline, said CEO of state-owned coal-based electricity producer Energy Complex (EC) Oltenia Daniel Burlan.

So far, the Government submitted to the European Commission (EC) a medium-term restructuring strategy for EC Oltenia which does not include the full closure of the coal-fired plants by 2030.

Burlan believes that a long-term, more committed, approach is needed, adding that all EU member states have such plans, noting that Germany will phase-out coal by 2038 and Poland by 2040. However, the strategy should be followed by massive financial packages in order to support the decarbonization effort. The restructuring plan for EC Oltenia provides for the closure of only some of the coal-fired units, with a total capacity of 1,650 MW (to be replaced by new gas groups – about 1,300 MW and solar power plants – about 700 MW).

However, even in 2030, the company will still operate five coal-fired units, three at TPP Rovinari and two at TPP Turceni. The restructuring plan envisages 2 billion euros in aid. Some 1.3 billion euros should come from the state budget, while the rest is expected to be secured through the EU’s Modernization Fund.