25 thousand homes in Serbia are without electricity due to snow storms

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Today, Sunday (February 5), more than 25,000 households in Serbia lost power due to strong winds and snowstorms in the Balkan countries.

Local media reported that more than 250 kilometers of local roads in mountainous southeastern Serbia were closed due to snow drifts of up to two metres, according to information monitored by the specialized energy platform, citing Reuters .

Meteorologists have announced that freezing temperatures and blizzards across the Balkans will continue in the coming days.

In Croatia, a red alert was issued for areas along the Adriatic coast, due to northerly winds estimated at 130 kilometers per hour.

Authorities in the coastal town of Budva in Montenegro called on citizens to stay indoors, after strong winds – on Saturday (February 4) – destroyed the roof of a school, brought down trees and lampposts, sank a tourist boat, and disrupted traffic along the coast.

The Bosnian authorities also banned the use of heavy trucks in mountainous areas, due to snow drifts and icy roads.

Italian investments in the Western Balkans

For its part, Italy is keen to enhance investments in strategic sectors in the Western Balkans, taking advantage of its geographical proximity and historical relations.

At a conference in the Italian city of Trieste, held on January 24, 2023, Italian Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni stressed the strategic importance of the region for Italy. Stressing that her government’s goal is to “bring more Italy to the Balkans”.

“I am not only thinking about infrastructure and energy networks, but also the development of small and medium-sized companies, to which the Italian model can offer really cutting-edge experiences,” Meloni said, according to BNE IntelliNews.

In 2019, a subsea power line between Montenegro and Italy, with a length of 445 km, was commissioned between the electrical substations in Sibagati, in the province of Pescara, and Listva, in the municipality of Kotor.

The electric line, which was built by the Italian energy company Terna, turned Montenegro into a communication gateway between Italy and other southeastern European countries.

The following year, the Trans-Adriatic pipeline, part of the Southern Gas Corridor that transports natural gas from Azerbaijan’s Shah Deniz II field to Europe, became operational as part of European efforts to reduce dependence on Russian gas.

The pipeline connects to the Trans-Anatolian Pipeline (TANAP) on the Greek-Turkish border, then runs through Greece, Albania and the Adriatic Sea to southern Italy.

Energy efficiency subsidies in Serbia

In another context, the Ministry of Mining and Energy of Serbia will launch a public call for subsidies for households to implement energy efficiency measures, including thermal insulation and installation of new solar panels.

The ministry said it has secured about 70 million euros ($75.76 million) for subsidies, stressing that the Department for Financing and Encouraging Energy Efficiency will announce a public call to local authorities in the second quarter of 2023, according to the Balkan Green Energy News platform. Green Energy News).

Energy rehabilitation measures refer to replacement of windows and doors, thermal insulation of walls and ceilings, replacement of more efficient boilers with existing natural gas boilers, installation of heat pumps, solar collectors, and solar panels to produce electricity for self-consumption.

The general invitation is addressed to the local authorities, who should subsequently issue public invitations to the citizens; In continuation of the National Energy Rehabilitation Programme, under which the Ministry of Energy and local authorities have allocated €23 million ($24.89 million) in the past year and a half.

The Ministry indicated that 3 public invitations were published within the framework of the National Energy Rehabilitation Program, and 14,000 contracts were signed with families in 151 municipalities and cities.

source: attaqa