Romania, Units of coal-fired Rovinari and Turceni TPPs will not be closed by 2026

, SEE Energy News

According to a press release from the ruling National Liberal Party (PNL), three units at coal- fired thermal power plant Rovinari and seven units at TPP Turceni will not be closed in the near future.

The press released reminds that the Ministry of Energy already stated that no coal-fired units operated by state-owned electricity producer Energy Complex (EC) Oltenia will be closed during the energy crisis. This rule also applies to old power plants, for which there is no other solution than to replace them with new ones, built from scratch. The European Commission agreed to the postponement of all deadlines for the shutdown of coal-fired units in Romania. Specifically, the three units at TPP Rovinari and seven units at TPP Turceni will not be closed in the next period.

Moreover, investments of over 900 million euros are now underway in Gorj and Dolj counties, for the modernization of EC Oltenia’s electricity generation capacities, through a state aid approved by The European Commission. Thus, by 2026, 1,300 MW will be produced by new gas- fired units and 700 MW by new solar power plants.

According to the statement, the PNL Governments, starting from 2020, have saved EC Oltenia from bankruptcy by providing more than a billion euros of state aid for company’s restructuring. Unfortunately, EC Hunedoara did not have the same fate and went into insolvency at the end of 2019 with debts of over 1.5 billion euros accumulated in the period 2013-2019, and had to return state aid illegally granted in the amount of 65 million euros.

The PNL press release says that the decarbonization of the Romanian energy sector continues. In June, the Government adopted Emergency Ordinance GEO 30/2022, which will eliminate coal from Romania’s energy mix by 2032, but in a phased manner, with the greening of mining operations and with social protection measures and professional retraining for people in the field.