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Russia

Russia attempts to restart Crimean wind projects

RUSSIA: The Russian government is considering restarting the Crimea's 100MW of wind projects after their operation was suspended following the occupation of the peninsula by Russia.

Crimean projects include the 21MW Mirnovskaya wind farm in west Crimea
Crimean projects include the 21MW Mirnovskaya wind farm in west Crimea

Sergei Bedryk, deputy head of the Crimean committee on fuel, energy and innovation policy, said the suspension was the result of the termination of the contract between the local Energyrynok, state operator of Ukraine's wholesale electricity market, and the operators of local wind power plants.

According to Bedryk, existing plans to build wind power plants in Crimea have also been frozen.
He added that the Russian government is likely to approve the amendments to the existing federal law, and introduce a green tariff for the local power system with regulated prices in order to bring the projects back online.

Before the Russian occupation, the Crimean wind projects supplied energy to the mainland Ukrainian grid. All of the wind projects were nationalised by Russia and the new Crimean government.

The relaunch of wind power plants in Crimea is important, as the peninsula traditionally has a large energy deficit while experiencing high winds.

Operating Crimean wind farms include the 15MW Tarhankutskaya project, which according to Windpower Intelligence is owned by the Ukrainian government. While the biggest Crimean project in the pipeline is the 200MW Turhenevska project, owned by French developer Filasa International.

Ownership

Before the occupation, the Ukraine offered a green tariff of EUR 0.34/kWh. Most local wind farms were owned by state corporations such as Crimean Generating Systems and state agencies, in particular the State Committee of Ukraine and the Ministry of Defense.

Some projects were owned by private company Wind Parks of Ukraine, which is the largest wind power holding in the country's wind energy sector.

At the same time, according to Bedryk, despite the suspension of wind operations, Crimea currently does not experience a shortage of energy.

According to Russian media reports, there is a possibility that the re-launch of Crimean wind power plants may take place after 1 June.

According to an announcement by the Russian government, the country's' energy ministry, together with the Federal Tariff Service, will formalise new tariffs for Crimean wind power plants while keeping the benefits that existed under Ukrainian control.

There is hope that this will not only bring existing wind farms back online, but also provide an impetus for the development of new projects.

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