Romania could add 15 GW of new renewables by 2030
Date: June 2nd 2022
Author: Tanja Srnovršnik
Romania could add 15 GW of new renewables capacity by 2030, with 60-65% of this being solar, Mihai Balan, executive director of Romanian Photovoltaic Industry Association (RPIA), said on Tuesday.This has also been acknowledged by the Romanian TSO Transelectrica in its new ten-year network development plan, which is currently undergoing public debate, Balan added during the RE-Source Southeast 2022 conference.
Andrei Manea, board member of the Romanian Wind Energy Association (RWEA), said that this is “quite ambitious for Romania,” but that it also showed there has been a “huge change in all the Romanian stakeholders' mindset. Not just investors, associations or the producers of components, but also authorities.”
Two years ago, there were no renewable energy projects in Transelectrica's development plan, he added.
The TSO does not yet know how all this new capacity will be added to the grid, but Balan noted that it has earmarked EUR 7bn for this purpose. Meanwhile, Manea mentioned that a lot of European money is available to Romania for renewables and grid investments.
The first projects, which will receive funding under the national recovery and resilience plan, will be selected this summer, said Balan. Romania hopes to allocate up to 950 MW of wind and solar capacity via a EUR 457.7m tender for renewable energy projects.
In total, Romania estimates it could receive at least EUR 16bn in EU recovery and modernisation funds by 2030 to upgrade its energy sector.
CfDs in 2023
The government is also working on another “useful tool” for boosting renewables – contracts for difference (CfDs).
They will guarantee a minimum electricity sale price and replace the former green certificates scheme. According to Balan, these should be implemented next year.
Romania also needs to speed up the implementation of renewables projects, because it is “pressured by time,” Manea said.
This is even more important now that the country has drafted new legislation which envisages the phase-out of all coal-fired capacity by 31 December 2030.
Manea pointed out that the European Commission's REPowerEU plan gives clear directions on how to speed up permitting processes, and that it is now up to associations and other renewables industry stakeholders to give the authorities clear advice on how the process can be improved.
Balan underlined that the development of this new renewables capacity needs to be done in a “healthy manner” to avoid repeating previous mistakes, which resulted in an unstable legal framework and a lack of coherent support mechanisms that brought renewables development in Romania to a halt.
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