New analysis: coal thermal plants might cost Republika Srpska up to BAM 1,5 billion!
During the panel discussion “Coal and power plants – strategic investment or a waste of money?”, held in Banja Luka, an analysis “and power plants – strategic investment or a waste of money?” written by Damir Miljević, was presented. Analysis looks into the economic aspects of coal exploitation in Republika Srpska, more accurately into business operations of Ugljevik, Gacko and Stanari, and plans for development of coal TPPs Ugljevik 3 and Gacko 2.
Igor Kalaba, Energy and Climate Change Program Coordinator in Center for Environment: “Unfortunately, argumentation such as world trends, climate change, health impacts and international obligations, including joining EU, are not interesting enough in order to start a dialogue with the government of RS, so most of our analysis up to date have been ignored or even mocked, but never refuted on a scientific basis. We are still trying to open a public, expert and detailed discussion on the direction in which the energy systems in RS and BiH are being planned, so we decided to approach the problem, in detail, from an economic point of view”.
The analysis was made taking into account the externalities of coal use in coal TPPs, primarily social gains and loss. The main conclusion was that the energy policies and strategies being conducted in RS are wrong and that their realisation will create an indirect social loss which will ammount to BAM 1.445 million in the following 30 years.
Damir Miljević, economist: “The analysis shows in an exact manner that wrong energy policies, together with bad managing and neglect of social interest and social benefits, has brought us to the situation that we have today: TPPs which are not economically viable, concessions compensations which are too low and the development of new TPPs despite their lack of social profitability. Unfortunately, this will result in increasing price of electricity for domestic consumers and will cause a social catastrophe which will be measured in millions of euros. The numbers are relentless and they are showing the catastrophic state which can not be altered by politics of populism”.
One of the recommendations from the analysis is to keep the old TPP Ugljevik running but with extensive renewal, including a de-sulphurisation unit(for which funding is already found), and optimisation of its business. In this way, the financial loss would be drastically reduced and all new investments would need to be urgently redirected to energy efficiency, reconstruction of infrastructure and towards renewables.
Igor Kalaba: „The stone age didn’t end because we run out of rocks. If we are to end the ear of fossil fuels, we can’t wait to use them all up. The latest analysis are telling us that if we are to avoid the worst consequences of climate change, we need to keep at least 80% of worlds coal reserves under the ground. This analysis shows that coal is not only dangerous, dirty and poisonous, but also unprofitable. Renewables are cheaper, more accessible and efficient than ever, and energy efficiency creates new jobs, saves money and environment. What are we waiting for?”.
 The analysis can be downloaded here.
The analysis has been published as a part of the “Stop prljavoj energiji – jer budućnost je obnovljiva” campaign which is being conducted by CSOs Centar for Environment (Banja Luka), Center for Ecology and Energy (Tuzla) and Ekotim (Sarajevo). Campaign aims to raise awareness on the dangers from coal powered energy generation, stop the construction of new coal TPPs and promote renewable energy sources and energy efficiency as an alternative approach to the development of BiH’s energy systems.