Coal Power Plants in Romania Working Without Environmental Permits

A Greenpeace report released yesterday morning stated that over 14 Romanian coal-fired plants are currently either operating without environmental permits or are missing important upgrades that would make them less polluting.

While the aging technology that is at the core of many power plants found in the European Union produce more than a third of the continent’s electricity, it is also a reason for concern. However, state officials have said that coal-fired power plants will continue to function, as they have in the last decades, as a result of the large amount of time that is required to develop clean energy alternatives.

This having been said, the European Commission has imposed new limitations on both power stations, as well as district heating plans. These are meant to both limit the yearly emissions, as well as pave the road to a more environmentally safe way to generate energy.

The director of Greenpeace Romania, Patricia Puschila has stated that “The government should refocus towards investing in renewable energy, which is the investment of the future and which certainly doesn’t damage our health and the environment.”

Greenpeace activists are currently preparing to project messages onto one of the power plants near Deva, hoping to both increase public awareness of this environmentally destructive issue.

However, as the deputy energy minister, Doru Visan told Reuters, the investment required to make the necessary upgrades needs to be reassessed, considering the new EU rules. In essence, the power plants would need to either conform to the EU standards or be shut down.

Two days ago, Greenpeace activists have projected the message “I have been functioning illegally for the last four years” on the Mintia coal-fired power plant near Deva, hoping to make the issue more apparent to both Romanian citizens, as well as state officials.

Romania currently draws its energy from a mix of coal, gas, hydro, nuclear and renewable energy sources. However, the country does not seem to be making any considerable changes in order to shift to renewable energy.

The ministry has plans to modify a segment of the Rovinari power plant by 2020 and is also negotiating with a Chinese company, in order to build a new, environmentally safe, power plant.

Unfortunately, the country finds itself striving to keep up with the technological advances made in the European Union, while also having to upgrade its aging infrastructure.

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