Slovenia sticks with coal power plant as costs reach nearly $2B

The prime minister of Slovenia said the cost of adding a new unit to its Sostanj coal-fired power plant has expanded to almost $2 billion, Reuters reported. The project is currently the biggest energy investment in the country.

The multibillion dollar investment, which was partly funded by the European Investment Bank (EIB) and the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), will go toward replacing two existing units at the 791 MW Sostanj plant. The project has received about $885 million in loans from EIB and EBRD.

Alstom, a power and transport engineering firm based in France, is the main contractor on the project. The new unit will provide an additional 600 megawatts (MW) to the plant, increasing generation capacity by 30 percent. It will be the country’s first power plant with supercritical steam parameters, allowing it to achieve the highest possible efficiency using local fuel. It is anticipated the new unit will be tested in 2015. Work commenced on the project in 2012.

"We don't have the privilege to decide whether this project can still be stopped," Prime Minister Alenka Bratusek said, according to the Slovenian Press Agency STA on Jan. 15. "The data we have show halting it would be more expensive than completion."

More information on the power market in Slovenia can be found on PennEnergy's research area

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