Investments in renewable energy sources as the key for environment protection

Measures and incentives for the use of renewable energy sources, defined in newly adopted legal solutions in the field of energy – these were the key topic of today’s meeting between the Ministry of Mining and Energy and NALED’s Environment and Property and Investments Alliances.

This meeting was opened by Jovanka Atanacković, State Secretary of the Ministry of Mining and Energy, as she used the opportunity to inform the participants about the changes made by the new legal solutions.

-Energy is an innovative and technologically challenging field, and if we want to keep up with the world, we must constantly adjust the regulations in this area. Through the Law on the Use of Renewable Energy Sources, we wanted to create such a climate that those who want to invest in these sources have a whole set of stimulative measures and the necessary flexibility to work. In that matter we have introduced, so-called, as a type of incentive, which we will award through online auctions. We will try to regulate the entire procedure as soon as possible, so that investors would be able to find out the conditions, quotas and everything that will happen at our first auction, on time. For now, I can reveal that the focus will be on the wind, as a renewable energy source, but - we also have solar energy in mind. Besides that, we are planning to introduce corporate contracts, which will enable direct connection between the buyer and the producer, but also a strategic partnership of the public sector and businesses. Thanks to these solutions, we can boast with having one of the most modern laws in the field of the use of renewable energy sources, in Europe - said Secretary Atanacković.

According to her, many legal entities are now interested in installing solar panels and systems for the production of energy, that they can use for their own consumption, but also for making surpluses in the network, which is soon going to be possible, through the so-called producer-consumer system (prosumer). Another important information for small firms is that they will not need a building permit, if their facilities have up to 50 kilowatts of installed capacity.

In addition to these activities, the Ministry of Mining and Energetics is also working on the Integrated National Plan for Energy and Climate until 2030 with a vision for 2050, as well as on a new Energy Development Strategy until 2040 with a vision for 2050.

Mirko Randjelovic, Assistant Minister in the green energy sector, emphasized that by adhering to the set goals and respecting the new legislation, by 2050 we will be able to satisfy half of the capacity for renewable energy sources.

All activities that are already being put into effect in the field of rational energy use, but also those that are yet to be implemented, will be united and institutionally regulated through the work of the Energy Efficiency Administration, which will be formed soon, and the citizens and businesses will be able to count on their help.

- The Ministry has already launched an incentive program for local governments, and on that occasion we have provided 50% of funds for energy efficiency measures. Precisely 67 cities and municipalities applied for our program and then announced their open calls for companies that would be hired to install carpentry, solar panels and similar. According to our data, 300 companies responded to this invitation. Based on the list of companies, citizens will be able to choose one and regulate problems in the field of energy efficiency. In addition, for residential buildings, we plan on public-private partnership contracts between companies and housing communities, and we are considering setting up vouchers for the purchase of energy-efficient products that we will distribute to the households - said State Secretary, Zoran Lakićević.

As the meeting was coming to the end, Zoran Ilić, Assistant Minister from the Electricity Sector, also addressed the audience, talking about the latest information related to energy-endangered customers. Although the previous law prescribed that these energy users could apply for either electricity or gas assistance, the new law is more beneficial – it considers that vulnerability in one category automatically means vulnerability in another.

Slobodanka Cucić, Vice President of NALED's Environment Protection Alliance, also spoke at the meeting. She took the opportunity to thank the Ministry of Mining and Energetics, on the indicated trust and prevenance, and at the same time she invited companies to cooperate in the field of energy efficiency improvement with international donors such as EBRD, USAID and many others.

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