Ukraine should create favorable investment environment for green energy and reduce energy consumption.
Until 2020, Ukraine is going to reduce energy consumption by 9 percent and increase the share of renewables in the energy balance of the country to 11 percent. “This is not an easy task. The state should understand how to encourage investments,” noted Kostyantyn Gura, representative of the State Agency on Energy Efficiency and Energy Saving of Ukraine, acting director of public company “Center for Green Investments”, at a discussion at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.
The “green tariff” developed for the period until 2030 is linked to euro rates, this reduces risks for foreign investors. However, the “investment boom” did not happen. According to Kostyantyn Gura, the main reason is the private sector which consumes 50 percent of all consumed energy. “The housing facilities in Ukraine are very old. Over 80 percent of buildings are not energy efficient, they require thermal modernization. In total, Ukraine needs UAH 16 billion of investments,” Mr. Gura said. He added that the Center received 300 applications for investment project from various regions of Ukraine and selected 30 of them which had technical specifications for implementation.
Energy efficiency experience of the Visegrad Four
According to Mykhailo Gonchar, president of the Center for Global Studies “Strategy ХХІ”, the Visegrad countries extract hardly any of their own energy resources. They use imported resources and take care of energy saving. “Ukraine’s extraction potential is much higher, but we need to find balance. Ukraine traditionally continues to give priority to extraction policy, [but we should not forget about energy efficiency]. We have to achieve zero level of gas import mainly through reduction of consumption,” said Mr. Gonchar.
Ukraine should start from adopting appropriate legislation, emphasized Andriy Chubyk, executive director of the Center for Global Studies “Strategy ХХІ”, co-author of the guideline. “Law-making process is very slow in Ukraine. Energy efficiency is mentioned among the priorities, however, key laws for this sector still remain drafts,” he noted. Andriy Chubyk mentioned the example of the Czech Republic, which choose as priority not renewable energies but energy efficiency, and even has taxes on solar energy. Hungary focused its efforts on reduction of consumption in public sector and increasing share of renewable energies. Poland launched many national and regional programs to support development of energy efficiency and the renewables on the level of households. In Slovakia, the government takes care of energy efficiency while business promotes renewable energies.