Following Poland’s region of Eastern Wielkopolska and Hungary, Croatia has joined the Powering Past Coal Alliance (PPCA), a coalition of over 120 countries, local governments and companies working to accelerate the transition from unabated coal power generation.
The only active coal-fired power plant in Croatia is located in Plomin, Istria, has a total capacity of 210 megawatts (MW) and serves to balance the electricity supply system.
The competitiveness of the thermal power plant itself, which has a license to operate until 2040, will certainly change in the future due to the European Union Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), as currently, Plomin II emits more than a million emission units per year, contributing to 6 per cent of Croatia’s total emissions.
Commenting on Croatia’s entry into the PPCA, Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Tomislav Ćorić stressed that the economic and social transition will stimulate a greater need for electricity, so it is necessary to plan well the introduction of more renewable capacity.
“We are creating conditions to stop the use of coal in the production of electricity and we can say with certainty that this will happen before the expiration of the license for the operation of Plomin II,” he said. “The inclusion of renewable energy sources will depend on the development of modern electricity infrastructure through the application of new technologies and especially the development of energy storage facilities.”
According to existing strategies, in order for Croatia to achieve its national goal of 36.6 per cent of renewables in the final consumption by 2030, it is necessary to connect over 2,500 MW of new renewable energy plants to the electricity system.
Additionally, it is equally important to open the possibility to actively involve all citizens and entrepreneurs in the system of distributed production and use of energy from renewable sources, therefore the government’s adjustments will go in that direction. For Minister Ćorić these are all preconditions for Croatia to stop being dependent on coal, a goal that can be achieved in the near future.