VERBUND demands: No further reduction of CO2 certificates


VERBUND demands that a stop be put to the further reduction of its share of CO2 certificates. General Director Hans Haider comments: "Otherwise, we will be faced with a threat to not just power plant projects, but Austria's electricity supply from its own resources, meaning that our country might, as a consequence, become even more dependent on electricity imports in the future. Which, however, would only result in a shift of the CO2 Problem abroad."

In NAP 1 (National allocation plan) from 2005 to 2007, the VERBUND thermal power subsidiary VERBUND-Austrian Thermal Power GmbH & Co KG (ATP) received 3.3 million t. of CO2 certificates. In NAP 2, valid from 2008 to 2012, this amount was reduced by no less than 25 %, to barely 2.8 million t. The fact that the certificate amount allocated at that time did not suffice is unequivocally substantiated by the figures: All in all, ATP had to acquire an additional 781,000 t. of CO2 certificates from abroad, amounting to costs of 17 million Euro. By comparison, some energy suppliers and industrial businesses were able to sell their certificates even with a profit.

Haider now urgently warns of a further reduction of CO2 certificates for VERBUND. "This would jeopardize planned investments in the amount of at least 650 million Euro." These include, above all, the Mellach and Klagenfurt projects. Those natural power plants are to generate both electricity and heat at half the CO2 emissions of a comparable coal-fired power plant .

Electricity from both projects is urgently needed especially in the low-generation region of Southern Austria. And district heating would prevent the accumulation of CO2 in the supplied households and reduce the fine dust problem. Haider criticizes: "With our planned investments in thermal power plants, we at VERBUND are making an active effort to contribute to climate protection. However, our commitment does not appear to be appreciated."

VERBUND currently generates 85 % of its electricity form domestic hydropower. Modern natural gas power plants are to account for the remainder of necessary power supplies in the future. Haider says: "If these investments are placed in jeopardy, Austria will, in the medium to long term, only have the option of total dependence on electricity imports. In this case, nobody can accuse the electricity industry of shifting the climate problem abroad. Politics alone will have to be held responsible."