Solar thermal technology will be part of the second phase of the Moldova Energy and Biomass Project. The project aims at a more secure, competitive and sustainable energy production in the Republic of Moldova by promoting renewable heating systems. It is planned to run between January 2015 and November 2017, offering a budget of EUR 9.4 million funded by the European Union. One of the project’s goals is to supply municipal institutions with at least 80 heating systems primarily burning biomass briquettes and pellets from agricultural waste. Up to 21 of the chosen institutions are said to receive a pilot heating system combining solar thermal and a biomass boiler. During the first phase of the Moldova Energy and Biomass Project (2011-2014), the programme helped to install 141 biomass-based heating systems at schools, nurseries and community centres without additional solar heating.
The project is implemented by the United National Development Programme (UNDP) in Moldova. According to Alexandru Ursul, UNDP Manager of the Energy and Biomass Project, the solar-biomass heating systems were planned for nurseries and hospitals in southern Moldova. The first step was an invitation to tender in May 2015, during which the UNDP invited engineering companies to provide designs and cost estimates for the construction of biomass heating systems at 66 public institutions. Twenty-one of those systems were planned to be combined with a solar thermal system or other energy-efficient measures. To reach the 80 installations target, another 14 plants are to be set up across the Trans-Dniester region at the Eastern Moldovan border to Ukraine during a later phase of the project.
Ursul said that beneficiary institutions were selected during a transparent assessment process. Decisions were made by a special committee, including representatives from the following institutions:
- Authorities of southern Moldovan region
- Energy Efficiency Agency of Moldova
- Energy Efficiency Fund of the Republic of Moldova
- EU Delegation to the Republic of Moldova
- UNDP Moldova office
The next step will be an autumn 2015 tender, which includes the purchase of the equipment and the installation work as a whole. The UNDP office has recommended to visit the auction page of the UNDP regularly to avoid missing the tender. Installation work is planned for the beginning of 2016.
According to Ursul, demand for solar collectors in Moldova is steadily growing, as an increased renewable share in the country’s overall energy mix is considered to be one of the Moldovan government’s priorities over the next several years.
This article was researched and written in cooperation with Eugene Gerden, a freelance journalist specialised in renewable energies and based in Moscow, and by Mihai Vintila, owner of InfoEst.ro, a Romanian news portal.
Energy and Biomass Project: www.biomasa.md
First tender invitation for the design of 66 renewable heating systems: www.undp.md/tenders/details/1005/
General Auction page of UNDP: www.undp.md/tenders/index.shtml
Energy Efficiency Agency of Moldova: http://rsr.akvo.org/en/organisation/712/
Energy Efficiency Fund of the Republic of Moldova: www.fee.md/index.php?l=ro
UNDP Moldova: http://www.md.undp.org/