Serbia Turning From Coal To Wind

The current population of the Republic of Serbia is approximately 8.74 million people. In 2016, utilities used fossil fuels (70%) and renewable energy (7.6%) to generate electricity in the country. Domestic coal is the primary source of fossil fuel and hydropower is the primary source of renewable energy in Serbia.

Serbia applied for membership in the European Union (EU) on December 22, 2009. Serbia is currently finalizing negotiations to formerly join the EU. All EU countries must comply with the “2030 Framework for Climate and Energy.” The framework mandates all countries cut greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 from 1990 levels and use renewable energy to generate 27% of the country’s electrical power. Serbia is taking positive steps to replace domestic coal with renewable energy in order to meet the EU climate and energy mandate by 2030.

The Serbian government has announced that construction has begun on the country’s largest wind farm, Cibuk 1. The wind farm will have 158 MW capacity and will cost over U.S. $350 million to complete. Cibuk 1 will contain 57 GE Renewable Energy 2.75-120 wind turbines, which will provide enough energy to power 100,000 homes. The wind farm will replace coal-fueled power plants and will displace over 370,000 tons of carbon dioxide per year.

Vetroelektrane Balkana (WEBG) will build and operated Cibuk 1. WEBG is wholly owned by Tesla Wind, a joint venture between Masdar (60%), Taaleri Energia (30%) and DEG (10%). Masdar, also know as Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company is a renewable energy company that is headquartered in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Taaleri Energia is a multinational finance company, headquartered in Helsinki, Finland. DEG is a multinational investment bank, headquartered in Cologne, Germany.

Serbia has relied on domestic coal and hydropower to provide virtually all the country’s electrical power. The move from coal to clean, wind energy will have an immediate impact in reducing greenhouse gases in the country. Coal produces 30% to 40% more greenhouse gases than natural gas. In my opinion, America’s energy policy should make replacing coal-fueled power plants with renewable energy and nuclear power, which produce virtually no greenhouse gases.

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