Unprepared as they are for the green energy transition, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, and Serbia will find it even more difficult to adapt to the ongoing energy crisis now that it has been deepened by the war in Ukraine. However, the latest turbulence in the energy sector will further facilitate the development of renewable sources, as well as energy efficiency, prosumers, and energy communities, according to Damir Miljević, Nikola Rajaković, and Miroslav Vujnović, authors of the Barometer of Sustainable Energy Transition report, titled Perfect Storm – an uncontrolled decarbonization of the Western Balkans’ power sector.
The cost of carbon dioxide within the European Union’s Emissions Trading System touched EUR 55 per ton this week in a sharp selloff. Prices at markets for CO2 permits have also plunged in North America, the United Kingdom and Australia despite record-high levels for natural gas and coal and an oil surge.
Participants at a roundtable on how to accelerate the energy transition in the region and Serbia agreed that the move toward renewable sources is necessary and more cost effective than to build or even maintain the capacity for the production of power from coal. “An inadequate decarbonization is expensive and a late one is too expensive,” said Professor Nikola Rajaković from the School of Electrical Engineering at the University of Belgrade. He and other speakers also insist the transformation leaves no room for coal.
The energy transition is not a threat to the Western Balkans, as it is often misrepresented, but rather a development opportunity, according to Damir Miljević, an energy transition consultant and member of the Regional center for sustainable energy transition (RESET). In an interview with Balkan Green Energy News, he says the energy transition is an industrial revolution based on harnessing the energy of the sun, wind, and water, resources the region has in abundance, unlike many countries.