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Domenica, 16 Giugno 2024
The plea / Ucraina

Ukraine bets on solar and wind power to defeat Russia

Moscow's attacks have crippled the country's energy infrastructure - from nuclear plants to refineries. Now Kyiv sees the green transition as a way to endure Putin's bombs

Betting on solar panels and wind turbines to survive Russian bombs and ensure greater energy security. This is the plan that DTEK, Ukraine's largest private energy company, intends to develop, finances permitting. In an interview with Politico, the company's CEO Maksym Timchenko asked the European Union to finance his country's green transition through loans from the European Investment Bank and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.

Since the outbreak of the war, Ukraine's energy sector has suffered 11 billion euro in damage. In January, the International Energy Agency highlighted how Russia, during winter, "escalated military attacks on the Ukrainian energy system, significantly undermining the country's energy supply security," targeting power plants, oil refineries, and district heating plants.

DTEK, which supplies one-fifth of the country's total electricity, reported damage to 80 percent of its infrastructure, with five out of six coal plants "seriously damaged," explained Timchenko. To repair them, 277 million euro and eight months of work are what it takes, and this would still be a "temporary solution." Using the crisis to take a step forward towards the green transition would be the real breakthrough. DTEK aims to invest in renewables, particularly solar and wind, both because these infrastructures are not concentrated in one location and therefore are more difficult to destroy if attacked by Russian drones, and to align Ukraine with the European Green Deal. "It's not only for our own consumption but also for exporting to Europe. I think that renewables in Ukraine help the European Union accelerate the green transition," Timchenko further explained.

Currently, DTEK already has a project underway in partnership with Denmark: a 114 MW wind farm in Mykolaiv southern region. Increasing total wind generation capacity to 500 MW by 2025 is the goal, for which financial resources are needed. A spokesperson for the European Investment Bank (EIB) told Politico that the institution has already mobilized €2 billion "for emergency repairs to critical infrastructure." Similarly, a spokesperson for the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) said they have already made available about €800 million "to stimulate private sector investments in renewables" in Ukraine.

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Ukraine bets on solar and wind power to defeat Russia

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