Although the Minister of Mining and Energy, Dubravka Đedović Handanović, expressed expectations that the Electric Power Company of Serbia “will cover the energy needs of the citizens and the economy of Serbia from its production”, the expert public does not share her optimism in this matter but adds that if imports from abroad during the winter be necessary to be smaller than two years ago when the country faced the collapse of the power system.
Minister Đedović Handanović stated that overhauls in EPS are coming to an end and that there are 2.3 million tons of coal in the company’s landfills.
We expect EPS to cover the energy needs of the citizens and economy of Serbia from its production and ensure safe supply – said Dubavka Đedović Handanović.
EPS told „Danas“ that capacity preparations for the new winter season were done according to plan and that “the system is ready to ensure the security and stability of electricity supply to consumers in Serbia in the coming period”.
At the landfills of thermal power plants these days, coal stocks are 2.3 million tons, and its production is taking place by the plan and available resources.
There are 600 gigawatt-hours in hydropower reservoirs, which is also in line with the planned values. During this year, the hydrological situation is favourable and EPS hydropower plants produced 9,543 gigawatt hours, which is almost 42 percent more than last year, and that is the maximum hydro production in the last 23 years – according to the EPS.
Domestic energy experts point out that it is not possible to guarantee that EPS will not be forced to import electricity during the winter if it is severe.
Namely, it is known that a significant number of households in Serbia are heated by electricity because they are not connected to the district heating system or to the gas network, which greatly increases the consumption of electricity in the winter season.
The new block B3 built at the Kostolac Thermal Power Plant has not yet started production, and Minister Đedović Handanović herself stated “that additional efforts and funds are needed to open new outcrops and mines because the deposits are more complex than before”.
Energy expert Željko Marković tells Danas that there are no guarantees that EPS will produce sufficient amounts of electricity in its plants during the winter season and that it will not have to import the missing electricity.