The Serbian government plans to work with Chinese firms Shanghai Fengling Renewable and Zidjin Mining Group to develop a renewable hybrid solar and wind power plant with at least 1.5GW capacity aiming to produce 30,000 tonnes/year of renewable hydrogen, the Serbian energy minister Dubravka Dedovic Handanovic said in a statement on 10 November.
The energy minister said Shanghai Fengling Renewables is interested in investments in renewable and storage capacities Serbia, especially renewable hydrogen production.
“Together with our strategic partners from the Zidjin Mining Group, they are considering the potential construction of a hybrid plant, a solar and wind power plant in the region of Bor, which would produce green hydrogen and enable Zidjin to reduce costs” added Handanovic.
Investments of around €2bn are planned in the development and construction of the infrastructure with wind and solar power farms, energy storage for hydrogen production and hydrogen fuel energy production technology, the Serbian minister said.
The plan is to provide an energy production capacity of 1.5GW, which could be potentially expanded up to 2GW, added the minister.
Zidjin owns and operates a large copper-gold mine in Bor, Serbia, according to the company’s website.
In addition to the electricity consumption for the mine, renewable energy would be used for the production of hydrogen wit a goal of 30,000 tonnes/year of renewable hydrogen, added the energy minister.
Serbia needs to design a hydrogen roadmap and national strategy to boost its hydrogen market, two local sources told ICIS.
“If Serbia bets on renewable and hydrogen then it should lay out a clear plan and legal framework for development,” said a local producer.
“Announcing a 30,000 tonnes/year renewable hydrogen capacity is ambitious but quite a welcomed development across the Balkans,” added the second source.
Serbia aims to increase the share of renewable energy sources in electricity production to 45%, significantly boosting energy efficiency, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030, according to its energy plan announced in July.
Currently Serbia has almost 400MW of wind power and 52MW of solar power capacity installed, data from the grid operator EMS showed.
The country has 4.4GW of coal-fired power, with coal and gas units representing 75% of the country’s energy mix, EMS data indicated.
Serbia is set to attract more investment in new renewable capacity by 2025 as the country launched its first renewable auction scheme on 14 June.
The energy ministry announced the first market premium auction for 400MW of wind and 50MW solar power capacity as part of Serbia’s three-year plan to build 1.3GW (1GW wind and 300MW solar) of renewable capacity by 2025.
The Serbian government plans to develop at least 3.4GW of renewable power sources and 350MW of gas-fired capacity by 2030, the energy minister announced on 11 July, ICIS reports.