Power Grid Capacity, Legal Issues Among Concerns of Wind Power Investors in Romania - Industry Official
BUCHAREST (Romania), April 15 (SeeNews) – Uncertainty regarding a necessary boost in the capacity of Romania's power transmission network and a much-awaited EU approval of increased regulatory incentives are among the main concerns of investors in Romania's wind energy sector, an industry official said on Friday.
"What we can see is that the connection approvals [of wind farms] exceeded the transit capacity of the Romanian network today and this is big problem for the investors in wind [energy], because they are not sure who and when will pay for the network enforcement," transmission and executive director at engineering and consultancy firm Tractebel Engineering Romania, Adrian Cilcic, told SeeNews.
Romania’s wind energy capacity will jump to 1,000 megawatts (MW) by the end of 2011 from 469 MW last year, according to the country’s economy ministry.
To fund green energy, Romania has adopted the "green certificate" programme, meaning power distributors must buy an annual quota of tradable certificates representing green energy. Thus producers of green energy gain from both the sale of electricity and the sale of green certificates. Currently one certificate is granted for one megawatt hour (MWh) of wind power.
The Romanian parliament approved amendments to the law, allowing the distribution of two certificates per one MWh, but the changes have not been approved by the European Union yet.
With one certificate per MWh, investors can cover their investments in 10-12 years, Cilic told SeeNews on the sidelines of the 7th Southeast European Congress on Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, held in the Bulgarian capital Sofia.
"With two certificates they can get their money back in four-five years," he added.
'In fact, the [EU's] concern is to not have double subvention."
Romania’s potential in wind energy generation is considered the highest in southeastern Europe. Romanian wind energy association RWEA said earlier this year it expects the installed capacity of the country's wind farms to reach 4,014 megawatts by end-2013.