Balkan Coal Power Plants Failing Toxic Emissions Targets

Coal-fired power plants in the Balkans are failing to hit toxic emissions targets and many face imminent closure if they continue to operate at current rates, the Energy Community warned on Monday in its latest report.

Balkan countries still reliant on coal-fueled power plants are struggling to comply with the European Industrial Emissions Directive stipulating the reduction of toxic emissions such as nitrogen oxides, sulphur dioxide and dust, according to the Energy Community Secretariat's Annual Implementation Report.

Many power plants in all of these countries fail to comply with the emissions ceilings established under their own National Emission Reduction Plans for at least one of these three pollutants, the report states.

"The Energy Community Contracting Parties must take urgent action on emissions abatement, renewables and energy efficiency, areas where they need to up their game," the director of the secretariat, Janez Kopac, said in a statement.

Established in 2006, the Energy Community brings together the European Union and its neighbors in an effort to create an integrated Pan-European energy market and extend EU internal energy market rules to Southeastern Europe, the Black Sea region and elsewhere.

The report singles out Kosovo as failing to comply with the emission ceilings for all three pollutants while Bosnia and Herzegovina and North Macedonia have failed to reach the ceiling for sulphur dioxide and dust.

The situation is more complicated in Serbia, the report says, given the country has yet to adopt its own National Emission Reduction Plan, leaving each plant to try and comply with the targets individually.

The Secretariat said that a number of power plants subject to the Directive's opt-out mechanism...

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