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Coal projects in the Balkans

The projects below include those Bankwatch and its partners are monitoring. The list here is not a comprehensive list of all planned coal power plants in the region.

Slovenia has built a new 600 MW unit at the Šoštanj lignite power plant (TEŠ6) which has turned out to be a financial disaster, as well as locking the country into a carbon-intensive future with tens of millions of annual losses for the next four decades.

EBRD
EIB

The existing Pljevlja thermal power plant in the north of Montenegro, near the border with Serbia and Bosnia and Herzegovina, has been operating since the early 1980s. Now the Montenegro government is proposing a second 254 MW lignite-fired unit at the site.

Chinese investors

The 350 MW Banovići coal power plant project is being developed alongside the existing Banovići mine just a few kilometres away from Tuzla by the predominantly state-owned RMU Banovići (Banovići Brown Coal Mines). The power plant would be a greenfield facility and a cement plant is also planned nearby. This project is in direct competition with the Tuzla 7 lignite power plant.

The 450 MW Tuzla 7 project would result in additional coal capacity compared to the current situation. The city already suffers from significant air pollution due to the existing power plant and several other industrial facilities. The project would be implemented by the China Gezhouba Group Co. and is slated for financing from the China ExIm Bank.

Chinese investors

EFT’s 300 MW Stanari power plant, constructed by China's Dongfang, and financed by the China Development Bank, is located near Doboj in Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the Republika Srpska part of the country. Originally it was planned to be a 420 MW plant but this was considered to be on the edge of economic viability and the capacity was reduced to 300 MW.

Chinese investors

Kosovo currently wastes much of the electricity it produces in its two filthy lignite plants: In 2015, 33 percent was lost through technical losses and theft, and much more is wasted through lack of energy efficiency measures. Yet the Kosovo government, heavily backed by the US government and World Bank, plans to build a new 500 MW lignite plant, Kosova e Re or New Kosovo, also sometimes known as Kosovo C.

EBRD

The Serbian government is planning a new 350 MW lignite plant at Kostolac in the country’s north-east. In spite of high level support and Chinese financing, the project is being plagued by concerns over pollution, state-aid and legal challenges.

Chinese investors

Croatian plans to more than double the capacity of the Plomin coal power plant would have resulted in increased carbon-emissions for several decades. The project’s profitability was questionable and the plans were facing local opposition and conflicting regional legislation.

EBRD
EIB

Ugljevik III near Bijeljina in the Republika Srpska part of Bosnia and Herzegovina is planned to consist of 2x300 MW units which would take lignite from the open cast mines at Delici, Peljave-Tobut, Baljak and part of Ugljevik-Istok. An existing unit of 300 MW at the site, operating since 1985, sits alongside the half-built Ugljevik II whose construction was never finished, and which is now the subject of a long-running dispute with Slovenia.

Chinese investors

The Kolubara B thermal power plant site is situated near Kalenic village, 60 km south-west of Belgrade, at the northern side of the Tamnava Open Cast Mine. The decision to build the 2x350 MW plant was taken in 1983 and construction started in 1988. Construction progressed slowly until 1992, when work was suspended due to sanctions against Serbia. At this stage about 40 percent of the facility had already been constructed, partly with the assistance of a World Bank loan.

World Bank Group

Linked to a slew of controversies, the Kolubara lignite mine in Serbia will receive loans from European public banks. Corruption allegations, pollution at local level, irregularities in resettlement of local populations and not to forget a climate damaging approach to energy investments should be reason enough to find alternatives to lignite mining.

EBRD