site.btaBulgarian, Romanian, Greek Representatives Discuss Offshore Wind Energy at COP28
A discussion on the potential of offshore wind energy in Bulgaria, Greece and Romania took place in the Bulgarian pavilion at the 28th United Nations Climate Change Conference COP28) in the United Arab Emirates on Tuesday. The event Unlocking Offshore Wind Energy Potential in the Three Seas was hosted by the Bulgarian Ministry of Environment and Water.
The round table was attended by Bulgarian Deputy Energy Minister Nikolay Nikolov; Dimitar Zarchev, Director of the National Dispatch Centre, Electricity System Operator (ESO); Greek Deputy Minister of Environment & Energy Alexandra Sdoukou; and Alexandra-Maria Bocse, State Adviser on Climate and Sustainability at Presidential Administration of Romania
Greece is already advanced in preparing legislation to boost offshore wind power under European plans to diversify energy sources as part of solutions against climate change. The wind sector is different, the projects are expensive, complex, some are offshore, said Alexandra Sdoukou, adding that Greece and Bulgaria do not have the experience of the countries of the North Sea region, but there are already good practices to follow.
“Bulgaria has a draft strategy, we are following a similar path to Greece,” said Bulgarian Deputy Energy Minister Nikolay Nikolov. He added that the bill is ready and there are challenges to be overcome related to various sites and areas in the sea that should remain outside the plans for offshore wind installations. Bulgaria is talking with neighbouring Romania about a possible joint offshore project in the Black Sea. “We believe there is a future for offshore wind energy in the region,” Nikolov said.
Dimitar Zarchev from ESO also expressed readiness to work with electricity from offshore wind installations. He pointed out several challenges for system operators, but he said they are all easily overcome. One of the questions is how and where to connect distant installations deep into the sea, in Bulgaria or to Romania, as interconnectors are needed. Zarchev said that this issue has been resolved in the North Sea and noted that this requires planning and significant commitments from governments and businesses. The energy will enter the power transmission networks of both Bulgaria and Romania and will be used by whoever needs it, so excellent coordination between the countries is needed.
Romania is using consultants to prepare the legislative framework, said Alexandra-Maria Bocse, noting that the country has the potential for six gigawatts of offshore wind energy by 2030. The bill that will allow the deployment of wind energy potential is still being discussed and is expected to be approved by Parliament in Bucharest early next year. There is potential for cooperation, it is very important to look more broadly and look for an opportunity to integrate projects from countries such as Azerbaijan and others into the European energy market, she added.