Energy Crisis And Changes In Serbia

Photo: Ministry of mining and energy

The challenges stirred by the energy crisis in Europe require urgent measures and bold decisions to embrace some more energy-efficient times as effortlessly as possible. We need to think promptly about how to ensure energy security, provide more green energy, and how to rationally spend it.

Although the supply of oil and gas is still uninterrupted, and the state has plans in place for potential crisis situations that would lead to disruption of the supply chain, it is important to establish diversification of suppliers on which energy stability directly depends.

The Minister of Mining and Energy, Zorana Mihajlović, recently explained that we are currently completely dependent on Russian gas but that the possibility of obtaining gas from other suppliers is opening. The latter will be possible with the completion of the interconnection with Bulgaria, which is due in September next year.

“Our task is to conduct Serbian politics in the interest of Serbia, leaving the emotions aside. Let’s see when and how much gas we can get and reserve capacities for next year. The moment we get another supplier, we will become safer,” the minister said.

More green energy – it’s Elektroprivreda’s turn now

The Ministry of Mining and Energy has created all the conditions for more green energy, but when it comes down to installing solar panels on the house roofs, EPS is still not doing its part, Mihajlović stated.

She pointed out that the Ministry started projects of allocating subsidies to households last year for the installation of solar panels. However, the problem is that “Elektroprivreda” still does not sign contracts with citizens.

“We did everything necessary. We passed laws, simplified procedures, and then we stopped because EPS is not doing its part”, said Mihajlović in Smederevska Palanka, where she visited the households that participated in the energy efficiency project.

She recently emphasized that greater use of RES in energy production is a way to become energy sufficient, independent, and secure and that if we do not change the structure of the energy mix, we will not have enough energy in the future, which will pose a threat to national security.

The goal is that all households replace carpentry

In early 2022, the Ministry of Mining and Energy announced a new public call for replacing carpentry and installing solar panels in cities and municipalities. The state has allocated 230 million euros to increase energy efficiency in 2022, and since the funds are in place, Mihajlović hopes that all citizens will be able to replace carpentry.

She also announced relief funds for devastated municipalities and socially endangered groups who will reduce their electricity bills by 20 to 30 per cent by replacing carpentry.

“Increasing energy efficiency at the national level means saving 50 million kilowatt-hours per year, which, more importantly, in return gives 300,000 tons less of carbon dioxide emissions”, the minister said.

Photo-illustration: Unsplash (American Public Power Association)

We need to change our attitude towards energy

The government will provide sufficient energy reserves for the next winter season, but that will not come easy or cheap; that’s why the citizens of Serbia must start saving and using energy more rationally.

“Serbia will have to make certain decisions, and we will all have to participate in the rationalization process. We are prepared for every scenario, but the question is how much it will cost because there is no such thing as cheap energy”, Mihajlović emphasized.

According to her, diversification of gas suppliers is a priority for Serbia. With the completion of the interconnection with Bulgaria, we will have the opportunity to receive gas from LNG terminals in Greece or Azerbaijan. One of the steps toward secure supply is connecting with Northern Macedonia and Romania.

Energy portal

Read the story in the new issue of the Energy portal Magazine RENEWABLE ENERGY SOURCES.