Home » Western Balkans Not Doing Enough to Cut Reliance on Coal – Report
Balkans Business Featured Global News News Technology

Western Balkans Not Doing Enough to Cut Reliance on Coal – Report

Bosnia, Kosovo and Serbia have been rebuked by an environmental watchdog for a lack of concrete strategies to achieve their stated goals on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The three Western Balkan countries have missed targets set in their National Energy and Climate Plans (NECPs) and made little effort to introduce concrete strategies to phase out using coal, Climate Action Network (CAN), a European NGO coalition fighting climate change, said in a report.

“Persistent dependence on an outdated and inefficient coal fleet hampers the much-needed transition to renewable energy sources in the region, further complicated by the potential transition to fossil gas as indicated in the NECPs,” the report said.

“This undermines the feasibility of implementing carbon pricing policies, which are inadequately addressed in the NECPs,” it added.

Bosnia, the region´s sole electricity exporter, produces up to 60% of its power from coal-fired power plants and the rest mainly from hydro. Kosovo and Serbia produce about 90% and 70% of their electricity from ailing coal-fired plants respectively, with the rest covered by hydro, wind and solar power.

The report said that while the countries’ national plans had outlined general goals for switching to green energy, promising to halt investment in new coal generating capacities, they failed to provide detailed information on capacity scale, sectoral uptake and comprehensive grid integration strategies.

Bosnia, which targets a 43.6% share of renewable energy in its power production in 2030, plans to keep online units of its Tuzla 4 and Kakanj 5 coal-fired plants even though the blocks have filled their 20,000 working hours’ threshold and are due to be closed.

In Kosovo, the NECP does not provide a comprehensive strategy for the phase-out of lignite, a soft coal that Kosovo is rich in, with expectations for coal power plants to remain operational beyond 2040, the report said.

“This lack of strategy highlights a critical gap in Kosovo’s commitment to decarbonisation,” it said.

Serbia should set more ambitious energy efficiency targets in line with its commitments to become climate neutral by 2050, the report said.

Source : Hellenic Shipping News