Europe & Eurasia Energy News Articles for December 14, 2012

Energy Technology and Governance Program

             

 Weekly collection of energy news articles for the region.  Click on the links for access to original publications.

 

Albania

Progress on the Privatisation of Albania's State Oil and Gas Company, Albpetrol – (PR newswire) Vetro Energy has confirmed that it has been asked to submit a performance guarantee in connection with its negotiations for the acquisition of Albania's State Oil and Gas company, Albpetrol. The requested guarantee is for 20% of the consideration…

Albanian regulator to revoke CEZ's distribution licence – (Power Engineering) Albanian energy regulator ERE is starting a procedure to revoke Czech utility CEZ's electricity distributor licence in Albania, ERE confirmed on Monday…

Albania's investment meltdown credit negative for CEZ – (Balkans) Last Tuesday (November 20), the Albanian Energy Regulation Authority officially notified CEZ Shperndarje, the Albanian electricity distribution utility 76%-owned by Czech utility CEZ, a.s. (A2 stable), that the regulator had initiated a procedure to withdraw the companys license to operate in the country…

 


Bulgaria

Bulgaria's Energy Minister Vows Cheaper Domestic Gas from January – (Novinite) Apart from cheaper Russian gas supplies for Bulgaria, the cost of locally produced natural gas will also drop from January 2013, according to Delyan Dobrev, Minister of Economy, Energy and Tourism…

Bulgaria energy minister to open discussion on natural gas price – (Focus) Sofia. Bulgarian Minister of Economy, Energy and Tourism Delyan Dobrev will open a discussion dedicated to the natural gas price in Bulgaria, organised by the 24 Chasa daily newspaper, which will be held on Tuesday, December 11, the press office of the Ministry of Economy, Energy and Tourism announced…

Bulgaria's energy experts predict a new increase in electricity prices in 2013  -(Balkans) Bulgarian energy experts predict a new increase in electricity prices in 2013. In July 2012, power rates went up by 13%, not by 10%, as initially expected…

Bulgaria Energy Minister Evasive about Decrease in Heating Tariffs – (Novinite) Delyan Dobrev, Minister of Economy, Energy, and Tourism, has explained that a 7.5% reduction in gas prices will not entail an equal decrease in heating rates…

3 Units of Varna Thermal Power Plant to Get Sulfur Purification Facilities – (Novinite) Czech power utility CEZ, owner of the Varna Thermal Power Plant, has informed about the launch of a project for reducing sulphur and nitrogen oxides emissions and dust particles at three units of the plant…

Bulgarian vote on Belene nuclear plant seen "meaningless" – (BNE) Even by the notoriously slow standards of the nuclear industry, the 30-plus years that Bulgaria's nuclear power plant at Belene has been under construction must serve as some kind of a record…

 


Bosnia

Poland's Rafako eyes energy projects in Bosnia and Serbia – (Balkans) Rafako, which has recently entered the short list of contractors for building Tuzla power station in Bosnia and Herzegovina, is also interested in the planned construction of two power units of a total capacity of up to 800 MW in Nikola Tesla power station in Serbia, Polish News Bulletin reported…

Diversifying energy – (DW) Bosnia and Herzegovina has long been a proponent of hydropower, but with no state regulation or financial incentives to encourage other renewable energy sources, the potential of solar and wind power is being overlooked…

US billionaire to invest in energy sector in Bosnia – (Energybangla) A  US power company has agreed to invest billions of dollars to build hydropower plants in Bosnia , local media reported recently…

Bosnia and Herzegovina: New energy law and RES amendments to simplify investment in Republika Srpska – (Balkans) Law on renewable energy sources and efficient cogeneration gives incentives to producers of renewable energy, and simpler procedures for investment, it was announced at the final public hearing on the draft of this law in Banja Luka…

 


Croatia

Croatia's bold energy plans face uncertain future – (BNE) Croatia is one of the world's most energy-import dependent countries, yet there's an increasingly mixed outlook for the ambitious investment plans of Croatian power monopoly Hrvatska Elektroprivreda (HEP) following the recent turn of events at both home and abroad…

Stepping on the gas with LNG – (Utility Week) Can liquefied natural gas help Europe to diversify and secure its future gas supplies, or are the many planned import terminal projects just pipe dreams? Siân Crampsie reports..

 


Kosovo

World Bank and climate change – (Brettonwood) A new Bank report warns about the impacts of climate change, but concerns have been raised about its own track record. While the Bank has increased its renewable energy share, its continued funding of fossil fuels and focus on large scale dams remain controversial…

NYT: Albright main bidder for Kosovo's PTK – (B92) The New York Times writes that one bid is from a fund founded by former U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, while "lobbying for another was James W. Pardew, the Clinton-era special envoy to the Balkans"…

 


Macedonia

Energy legislation: Moldova gets more time – (Euro Politics) Energy Commissioner Günther Oettinger welcomed, on 6 December, the previous day’s decision by the Ministerial Council of the Energy Community to give Moldova almost four extra years to unbundle its gas pipeline network…

The Biggest Macedonian Energy Company Chose Grah Lighting LED Solutions – (Solid State Lighting Design) Macedonian energy company Makpetrol has been continuing joint project with LED lighting manufacturer Grah Lighting, which they started together last year. The first petrol station along the highway Skopje–Gevgelija was an important stepping stone for further collaboration. To this day already 15 petrol stations have been equipped with Grah® LED Lighting products…

FYR Macedonia: ZELS launches action plan for energy efficiency and environmental protection – (Balkans) FYR Macedonia's Association of Local Self-Government Units (ZELS) promoted Friday an action plan for the development of fresh policies and promotion of local initiatives tackling climate changes between 2012 and 2015…


Montenegro

Montenegro signs declaration of accession to Energy Charter– (Balkans) At yesterday's Energy Charter's ministerial meeting in Warsaw, Economy Minister Vladimir Kavarić signed the Declaration on Montenegro's accession to that organisation…


Romania

EU antitrust regulators to investigate Romania's Transelectrica– (Reuters) EU antitrust regulators are investigating whether Romanian power exchange operator OPCOM and its parent Transelectrica are blocking foreign traders from the Romanian wholesale electricity market…

Naming of Romania’s Energy Regulation Agency management triggers European criticism – (Romania-Insider) The recent naming of Romania’s National Regulation Energy Authority (ANRE) general management triggered criticism from high up in the European Commission…

EBRD continues to support Romania’s renewable energy strategy with €50 million loan – (Balkans) The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) continues to support Romania’s strategy to increase its renewable energy production by lending €50 million to finance the operation of the 24 MW Vutcani wind farm and 33 MW Sarichioi wind farm…

EU INVESTIGATES ROMANIAN POWER MARKET– (AU News) European Union antitrust regulators are investigating whether Romanian power exchange operator OPCOM and parent group Transelectrica have been blocking foreign traders from the local wholesale electricity market…

EBRD announces financing deal for two Romanian wind farms – (Romania-Insider) The European Bank for Reconstruction Development (EBRD) has finalized a EUR 50 Million deal to finance the operation of two wind farms in Romania..

Statistics: Romania's electricity resources decrease 3 percent, in first ten months – (Actmedia) Romania's electricity resources decreased 3 percent, from January to October 2012, while final consumption increased 0.2 percent, as reveal the provisional data released by the National Institute of Statistics (INS)…

Romania commits to all obligations under Kyoto Protocol – (Actmedia) Romania will abide by all its obligations following its adoption of the Kyoto Protocol, and the Romanian authorities back the project of Durban Platform regarding climate change, says Elena Dumitru, vice-general secretary with the Ministry of the Environment and Forestry during the 18th session of the conference of the parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Changes (UNFCCC) in Doha…

 


Serbia

Feed-in tariff cuts could delay or halt Serbia's wind projects – (Balkans) Serbia's plans to cut wind energy feed-in tariffs by 3.2% could delay or halt more than $1.3bn in planned investments into the Balkan country's wind parks, the Serbian Wind Energy Association (SEWEA) warned on Wednesday, Reuters reports…

Serbia raising incentives for hydroelectric development – (Hydro World) A new renewable energy development plan could reward small hydroelectric development with higher incentives, HydroWorld.com has learned…

Serbia Lifts Hydro Power Incentives, Cut Wind, Solar Fees – (Bloomberg) Serbia plans to increase incentives for electricity produced in small hydroelectric plants and cut feed-in tariffs for wind farms and solar parks to boost power generation from renewable sources…

Serbia to expand cooperation with China in energy projects – (Balkans) Serbia's Prime Minister and Minister of the Interior Ivica Dacic announced the continuation of cooperation with China in expanding capacity of the Drmno pit and construction of a new thermal power plant Kostolac D3 under preferential terms…

Electricity situation in Serbia stable – (Balkans) Electricity situation in Serbia is stable, and over the last few days, hydrological conditions improved as well.  Hydro power plant production in the “Electric Power Industry of Serbia” was significantly higher than at the beginning of October…

Serbia's EPS spends 500 million euros on electricity imports – (Balkans) According to unofficial information, EPS spent 500 million euros on electricity imports in last few years, despite of the fact that at least 150 million euros could have been saved if EPS had bypassed the intermediaries…

 


Armenia

Gazprom insists of raising the price of gas for Armenia in 2013 – (Public Radio of Armenia) Russian Gazprom Company insists on raising the price of the gas supplied to Armenia in 2013, Armenian Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Armen Movsisyan told reporters today…

Revisiting the Metsamor Nuclear Power Plant – (The Armenian Weekly) The Soviet Union may have dissolved more than two decades ago, but its nuclear legacy is still a matter of contention and controversy in and among its former territories and their neighbors…

S. Sargsyan and K. Kovalchuk discussed the cooperation between the INTER RAO UES and Armenian energy sphere – (Times.AM) Today, on December 11, Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan received the Chairman of Management Board of the INTER RAO UES Boris Kovalchuk. Boris Kovalchuk presented to Serzh Sargsyan results of his Company’s works this year, spoke about the development priorities and discussed programs of future cooperation with Armenia in the energy sphere…

 


Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan increases electricity production – (News.az) From January to November this year, the system of JSC Azerenergy generated more than 19.2 bn kW/h of electric power, which is 7.3% more than the same period last year…

Azerbaijani power plant first in world to earn carbon credits through energy efficiency modernization – (Trend) A thermal power plant in Azerbaijan, AzDRES, will become the first in the world to be able to sell carbon credits earned thanks to an energy efficiency modernisation project, the EBRD report stated…

Gas - main raw material for electricity production in Azerbaijan – (Trend) Some 4.16 billion cubic meters of gas was used to generate electricity in Azerbaijan in January-September, the State Statistics Committee told…

ADB ready to include alternative energy in its strategy on Azerbaijan  -(abc.az) Baku, Fineko/abc.az. The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is ready to include alternative energy in its strategy on Azerbaijan. ADB country representative Olli Noroyono has stated that use of renewable and alternative energy sources in view of its economic importance may be one of the priorities of the 5-year Country Partnership Strategy (CPS), which the Bank hopes to adopt in 2013…

Azerbaijan reduces energy production by 10.5%- (APA) In November, 2012, more than 1.7 bln kVt/hour of power energy was produced in Azerbaijan, down 10.5% from previous year. According to Azerenergy OJSC, 1.6 bln kVt/hour of energy was produced by heating power stations (HPS), 0.1 bln kVt/h – by water power stations (WPS)…

 


Georgia

Georgian Energy Minister discusses possibility of reducing electricity tariff with investors – (Trend) Energy Minister Kakha Kaladze met with representatives of the Russian company Inter RAO and the Czech Energo-Pro Georgia on Tuesday…

Director General of Georgian Telasi appointed – (Trend) The Supervisory Board of JSC Telasi confirmed the head of generating enterprises of the INTER RAO UES in Georgia, (Ltd Mtkvari Energy, JSC Hrami HPP-1 JSC and Hrami HPP-2) Devi Kandelaki as the new CEO, the company said…

Georgia Wants KazTransGaz to Take Back Control of Local Unit – (Bloomberg) Georgia wants KazTransGaz, Kazakhstan’s state natural-gas shipping monopoly, to take back control of its local unit. Talks for the Kazakh company to resume its leadership of OOO KazTransGaz Tbilisi took place in November, according to Mariam Valishvili, Georgia’s deputy energy and natural resources minister…

Georgian, Turkish energy ministers discuss deepening of cooperation – (Trend) Georgian Energy and Natural Resources Minister Kakha Kaladze met with his Turkish counterpart Taner Yildiz in Turkey…

Georgian PM vows at least 10% electricity, gas tariff cut – (news.az) Halving of tariff for household electricity and gas consumption will be impossible, but it will be reduce at least by 10% next year, PM Bidzina Ivanishvili said on November 28…

Georgia looking forward to Kazakhstan’s proposals on KazTransGas-Tbilisi company – (Trend) Georgia looks forward to Kazakhstan's proposals on KazTransGas-Tbilisi company, Georgian Deputy Energy and Natural Resources Minister Marika Valishvili told Trend over phone on Tuesday…

Construction of Georgian Khudoni hydropower plant postponed – (Trend) The Trans Electrica Ltd company registered in the offshore area of the Virgin Islands, has indefinitely postponed a public hearing of the impact…

 


Russia

Russian Market Rules Changes Needed for Exports, Researcher Says – (Bloomberg) Russian power shipments to the Nordic region via Finland will remain at historical lows unless Russia modifies its electricity market rules, a Finnish researcher said…

Gazprom begins construction of South Stream natural gas pipeline in Russia –(EBR) Russia-based Gazprom has begun construction of a natural gas pipeline called South Stream at the Russkaya compressor station site near Anapa, in Krasnodar territory…

Finland to Test First Power Exports to Russia Next Year – (Bloomberg) Finland may for the first time test electricity exports into Russia next year, Finnish grid company Fingrid Oyj said…

Russia starts 16 bln-euro gas project – (Daily News) Russian President Vladimir Putin officially launched South Stream, the 16 billion-euro pipeline project to carry gas to Europe, which also received Turkish approval despite Ankara’s rival plans…

 


Turkey

Turkey and Balkans boost energy ties – (SETimes) Turkey and many Balkan countries are planning to boost their energy ties in the immediate future through a series of joint initiatives…

Turkish power: Eon jumps in – (beyondbrics) It is not every day that one of the world’s industrial giants sets up shop with one of the titans of a big, dynamic economy, so Eon‘s proposed joint venture with Sabanci Holding of Turkey has caused quite a stir…

Turkey's PM launches 112 projects by the Forestry and Waterworks Ministry – (Balkans) Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan inaugurated "112 giant projects" by the Forestry and Waterworks Ministry on 12-12-2012, saying they served the whole nation and all the projects reached the entire country…

Electricity generation and consumption ups in Turkey – (Trend) Electricity generation decreased by 3.1 percent in Turkey in November 2012 compared to the same month in 2011 and amounted to 18.5 billion…

Turkey and Iraq Kurds close to energy deal– (FT) Turkey and the Kurdish regional government of Northern Iraq are in the final stages of talks on a giant Turkish investment in the Kurdish oil and gas sector that could transform the region…

Turkey: Economics and energy interests ease old cross-border tensions– (FT) The ballroom of Erbil’s top hotel was packed last month as the great and the good of Kurdish society came to celebrate Turkey’s national day. Ministers swapped gossip with oil barons over kebabs as they relished Ankara’s hospitality…

Greenpeace Blasts Turkish Nuclear Energy Institute Over Negligence  -(Green Prophet) As Turkey moves to build its first nuclear power plant, there are troubling signs that the country’s nuclear energy institute is not monitoring nuclear hazards carefully. An abandoned lead factory yard used as a playground by local children in Turkey’s western İzmir Province contains high levels of radiation, according to Greenpeace Turkey, yet the Turkish Nuclear Energy Institute (TAEK) said the source of the radiation could not be found and pronounced the area safe…

 


Ukraine

Alternative Energy Ups Ukraine's Energy Independence - Industry Expert – (PR Newswire) The use of renewable energy will allow to significantly cut the volume of energy import in Ukraine, as well as strengthen the independence of the country, reckons Rainer Hinrichs-Rahlwes, the President of the European Renewable Energy Federation…

Ukraine should abandon huge support for traditional energy, focus on renewable – (Power Engineering) Ukraine should abandon multi-million support for traditional energy generation, which still has a dominating position in the country and should make its choice in favor of renewable sources of energy, according to President of the European Renewable Energies Federation (EREF) Rainer Hinrichs-Rahlwes…

Russia, Ukraine hint new gas deal possible next week – (the Globe and Mail) Russia and Ukraine might be close to signing a new gas supply deal next week, ending a long-term standoff that has repeatedly threatened Europe’s energy security, officials from both sides indicated on Wednesday…

Ukraine seals new renewables law with local-content rules – (ReCharge) Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych has signed a law which tightens the rules for the country’s renewable energy market, in a move analysts claim will strengthen the position of existing players while making it less attractive to newcomers…

Ukraine Humiliated in Televised $1.1 Billion Fake Gas Deal – (Minyanville) Certainly the folks at Gazprom are having a good snicker, reveling in the mockery that has been made of what should have been a landmark Ukraine-Spain gas deal that would have loosened Russia's gas grip on Kiev…

Ukraine passes renewable energy law cutting solar FiT – (PV Tech) Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has signed off a new law that will reduce feed-in tariffs for solar power plants commissioned from April 2013…

Energoatom borrows EBRD funds to enhance safety at Ukrainian nuclear power plants – (KyivPost) A loan borrowed by NJSC Energoatom from the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) will let the company fully implement a comprehensive program for enhancing safety at Ukraine's nuclear power plants (NPPs)…

Ukrainian PV market on the verge of expansion – (PV magazine) The maturing photovoltaic markets in Germany, Spain, France and Italy, and recent feed-in tariff cuts in a number of key markets have prompted solar investors to look for new opportunities in south east European (SEE) nations and Commonwealth Independent States (CIS)…

 

 

  

This program is made possible by the support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents are the responsibility of the United States Energy Association and do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.