Serbia: Waste-to-energy plant – EIA updated in line with EU regulations

, News Serbia Energy

The public debate on amended environmental impact assessment – EIA study will be held on 7 October. Serbian Ministry of Environmental Protection said that the EIA study for the project for the construction of waste-to-energy plant at Belgrade’s Vinca landfill, namely its waste incinerator, has been updated in line with the EU regulations.

The statement from the Ministry said that the study was amended because EU pollution control standards, the so-called LCP BREF – best available techniques reference documents for large combustion plants, have been upgraded in the meantime. The move was necessary for getting the integrated pollution prevention and control permit and the operational permit for the project.

The changes within the study include limits for nitrogen oxides, hydrogen chloride, sulfur dioxide, heavy metals, dioxin and furan and it became mandatory to measure mercury levels.

In May, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said that a project for the construction of waste-to-energy facility at Vinca landfill near Belgrade has successfully reached a financial close for a 290 million euros loan by a pool of lenders. This 370 million euros project is one of the largest public-private partnerships in Serbia to date and brings private funding and expertise to a public sector project. The EBRD is contributing a 128.25 million euros syndicated loan, including a loan of 72.25 million euros for its own account, a loan of 35 million euros provided by Erste Group Bank AG under the A/B loan structure, and 21 million euros in concessional finance from the Green Energy Special Fund, which is funded by TaiwanICDF. Private investors – Suez (France), Itochu Corporation (Japan) and the European fund Marguerite launched the construction of the new facilities started in October 2019. It will replace Europe’s largest unmanaged landfill, located just 15 kilometers from the center of Belgrade and holding more than 10 million tons of waste after more than four decades of operation. The site will be fully remediated with a new sanitary landfill, a waste-to-energy plant and a modern facility toprocess construction and demolition waste. The new landfill will be EU-compliant, with modern waste-management and treatment technology. The 103 MW waste-to-energy facility will contribute to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and the dependence of Belgrade on fossil fuels. It will have capacity for a volume of approximately 340,000 tons per year of household waste, while the construction and demolition waste facility will treat 200,000 tons per year. The project was to be launched in mid-2020, while its completion and full commercial operations were expected in 2022. However, the construction has not yet started.