Renewable Energy Productionin Romania - All-Time Record Last Year

The renewable energy production reached a record figure at the end of last year, when the total capacity of the projects in the grid exceeded 3,757 MW, 60 per cent higher than in late 2012, according to data released by Transelectrica, Agerpres informs.

Thus, over the first eleven months of 2013, renewable projects were installed with a capacity in excess of 1,400 MW, plus the 2,335 MW which were already in the grid by that time. Therefore, 2013 remains in the history of the Romanian energy sector as the year with the most power projects installed from renewable sources. The most spectacular ascent was recorded in the field of photovoltaic energy, where there were projects of 740 MW in late November 2013, 15 times more than in late 2012, when there were photovoltaic panels of only 49 MW. As for wind energy, the projects reported a figure of 2,459 MW compared to the 1,822 MW in late 2012. There are also micro-hydropower stations in the grid with 505 MW, compared to 405 MW in December 2012, and biomass stations of 53 MW compared to 40 MW in 2012.

Nonetheless, the momentum gained by the renewable energy production will stop short this year, after the Government decided to cut the green certificate subsidies for the new projects. According to government ordinance 994/2013, published in the Official Gazette on December 16, the new projects entering the grid on January 1, 2014 will get fewer subsidies. Thus the photovoltaic projects get only four green certificates per MWh, compared to six certificates like before. The wind projects benefit from a certificate only out of two, and the micro-hydropower stations benefit from two certificates compared to three, like last year. The suppliers of the final clients have to buy a certain number of green certificates and they transfer the expenses for the green certificates into the final receipt. Consequently, the final consumers, population and industry, are those who pay these subsidies, and more renewable energy projects translate into higher bills. Romania adopted this scheme because of the commitment made, that 24 per cent of the domestic raw energy consumption should come from renewable sources in 2020, compared to 17 per cent of 2005.

The officials of the National Energy Regulation Authority (ANRE) announced back in 2013 that the target was reached and therefore a cut in subsidies is advisable.