SKOPJE (Macedonia), December 10 (SeeNews) – Macedonian environmental group Eko-svest, member of the European Environmental Bureau (EEB), said it has called on the country's government to stop subsidising new producers of renewable energy through the purchase of their electricity at a guaranteed price.
The government should move to a more competitive system with lower costs for end-consumers, Eko-svest said in a statement e-mailed to SeeNews last week.
“The call comes as the government plans a new decree on support measures for electricity production from renewable energy sources that extends the system of feed-in tariffs, without even a competitive tender,” the environmental NGO said.
According to Eko-svest, the intention to continue paying guaranteed prices to new power plants is in conflict with EU rules that stipulate moving towards more competitive and market-based support schemes using auctions for all but the smallest plants in order to reduce costs.
“Macedonia is obliged to comply with EU legislation on competition under the Energy Community Treaty and its Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU and has been receiving assistance from the EBRD and USAID to move towards a new incentives system,” the statement reads.
The new draft decree includes auctions for larger wind farms and solar plants, but leaves the feed-in tariff system in place for hydro power plants of up to 10 MW, wind farms of up to 50 MW, and biomass and biogas-fired facilities of up to 1 MW.
Eko-svest is also calling for a public consultation on the new legislation, considering its potential importance for the environment and household costs.