Porto Romano thermo power plant
As the way out of the current energy crisis, the Albanian government has been promoting a series of new hydropower plants and carbon-intensive power generation facilities. Among them the Albanian Ministry of Economy, Trade and Energy has instigated a coal-fired Porto Romano thermo-power plant (TPP) near the port city of Durres, eyed by the Italian energy company Enel.
In December 2007, the Albanian Minister of Economy, Trade and Energy and the CEO of the Italian energy company Enel, Fluvio Conti, signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the development of the energy sector in Albania. Under the terms of the MoU, Enel agreed to construct a coal fired thermo power plant (TPP) and a transmission line to Italy.
According to the environmental assessment study, the plant would consist of two 800 MW coal-fired units, a jetty for handling the imported coal, a transmission line connecting the local substation to Tirana s main substation and an undersea transmission line linking the facility with Italy. Half of the energy produced will be exported to the Italian market, provoking complaints that Italy is exporting its pollution to Albania instead of reducing it.
While the Albanian government hopes that the Porto Romano TPP will improve the country’s energy security, environmentalists see little sense in increasing the use of highly polluting coal, which would mainly be imported. Not only would coal power generation increase Albania’s carbon emissions and dependency on imported fuel, but it is also a source of significant local pollution, which already exceeds national limits.
So far, no international development lender has been officially considering financing for the Porto Romano project. Given the past and present involvement of international financial institutions in other fossil fuels backed energy generation projects in Albania, such as the combined-cycle power plant in Vlora, the Albanian environmental NGO coalition Ekolevizija calls upon the multilateral development banks and international development donors:
- Not to consider the Porto Romano TPP for finance.
- To prioritise sustainable energy projects, particularly in the field of renewable energy and energy efficiency, when it comes to review its three-year investment strategy for Albania at the end of this year.
- To encourage the Albanian government to find solutions for the energy security of the country via truly renewable energy and energy efficiency, and specifically to approve substantial regulatory incentives for the development of renewable energy projects
Study Over the edge: Enel s plans to export its pollution to Porto Romano, Albania
(27 April, 2010)
Studim Rezultatet e pyetësorit mbi TEC-in në Porto Romano
(15 October 2009)
Prezantim Environmental assesment of the Industrial and energetic parks Porto Romano, Durrës, Albania
Komente mbi draft strategjinë e BERZH për Shqipërinë
(31 October 2009)