The European Union allocated an additional 2 million euros for a technical assistance project in order to bring renewable energy-based district heating to eight municipalities in Kosovo*.
Once completed, the project will provide heating to 1.2 million people in the municipalities of Gjilan, Ferizaj, Prizren, Peja, Drenas, Obiliq/Kastriot, Mitrovica and Zveçanand.
“The EU is committed to supporting the energy infrastructure in line with the Green Deal. Through the development of district heating systems, there is an opportunity to substitute the use of electricity and burning coal for space heating, thus promoting clean energy for all citizens”, said Luigi Brusa, Administrator Head of Cooperation of the EU Office Kosovo.
The Government of Kosovo has already identified the implementation of district heating systems as its national priority and included this subsector in the Single Sector Project Pipeline.
Luan Morina, Head of Department for Energy of the Ministry of Economy and Environment of Kosovo said in relation to new district heating systems that “decentralisation, diversification and energy efficiency should be considered foundations to address the security of energy supply in the electricity/heating sector.”
The existing district heating systems that cover only four municipalities of Prishtina, Gjakova, Mitrovica and Zveçan are not only unsuitable for collective residential and service sector buildings but have a negative impact on air quality and public health.
As the population and the process of urbanisation grows in Kosovo, the demand for heating goes up too. Against this background, further expansion of the district heating system is expected to increase the security of supply and energy efficiency, as well as improve quality of life and reduce emissions.
The funding for additional district heating systems in eight municipalities will be provided in part from the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) as well as from Western Balkans Investment Framework (WBIF) grants.
* This designation is without prejudice to positions on status and is in line with UNSCR 1244/1999 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.