Croatia Must Invest Much More in Heating, Cooling Systems

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The Council presented guidelines for stimulating the modernisation of centralised heating and cooling systems, which underline their importance and positive effect on the decarbonisation of urban areas and recommend measures to eliminate current obstacles.

“We are faced with a big challenge, as are other European states, but Croatia will have €30 billion at its disposal in the next dozen years to change, and that change is not only necessary in the judiciary, education and other areas but in energy too,” said Julije Domac, chair of the Energy Transition Council and the president’s advisor on energy and climate.

He expects the government and the ministry in charge to endorse the guidelines and incorporate them into a heat energy supply bill.

President Milanović supported the guidelines, saying that Croatia must keep up with energy-advanced countries, “so that we slowly abandon gas boilers and hope for the better.”

“It seems complicated and expensive, but there’s a solution and it’s called European Union funds which contain huge money which we won’t be able to fully spend on business centres and all the rest (…) This area will require a very aggressive and quality administrative preparation,” Milanović said.

He reiterated that Croatia must utilise every euro from EU funds and that the difference between success and failure was measured in billions that could be spent on projects such as heating.

Energy Transition Council member Kristijan Lovrenščak said decarbonisation of heating and cooling was one of the EU’s key challenges, notably in densely populated urban areas. In Croatia, centralised heating systems distribute 15% of all energy to heat premises and water, he added.

He said Croatia’s legislation did not stimulate the development of central heating systems and should therefore be amended, adding that the systems themselves were inefficient.

He recommended boosting cooperation between centralised system operators and developing centralised cooling systems, which he said were rare in Croatia.


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