Experts: The draft Energy Strategy of Ukraine till 2035 includes wrong decision of constructing hydropower plants on the Dnieper and Dniester

Kyiv, March 23, 2017.

The draft of Energy Strategy of Ukraine till 2035 provides for a wrong decision on construction of some hydropower plants on the Dnieper and Dniester. This was informed by Vitalii Kononov, head of the Green Party of Ukraine, at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. The draft strategy was developed by the National Institute for Strategic Studies for the Ministry of Energy and Coal Industry of Ukraine. “This [transition to other forms of energy – Ed. UKCMC] occurs when the world is actively switching to such eco-friendly sources as solar and wind energy that are much cheaper than hydropower. This draft continues to focus on nuclear power,” noted Serhiy Kurykin, former Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine, deputy chairman of the Green Party of Ukraine. The government sees future income from the sale of nuclear power in this questionable strategy.

“Plain hydropower plants were built nowhere else but in the Soviet Union. […] When we begin to calculate all the losses due to alienation of these areas, their flooding and inundation of the surrounding areas, it turns out that actually big hydropower is probably the dirtiest and not much better than nuclear power. Though water resource is renewable, it has its limits,” noted Serhiy Kurykin. “We should minimize the use of resources, including hydro power,” believes Yurii Samoilenko, head of the Ukrainian Ecological Association “Green World.” He also stressed that such neglection of water resources will involve financial losses incurred by Ukraine for overcoming the consequences of natural disasters.

Serhiy Didkovskyi, executive director of Golova Agency, believes that the use of coal and hydropower is passing into history in the modern civilized world. And the transition to other sources should be planned at the state level. Serhiy Bohush, head of the Ukrainian Association of electric market, commented: “Coal and oil are not evil. They must be used in a different way.” Ukraine ranks 5th in the world in introducing electric vehicles.

“We still do not have the energy balance. We do not know how much energy we need and generate; how much we consume and sell,” noted Halyna Oliinykova, employee of the All-Ukrainian Environmental NGO “MAMA-86”. According to the EU Association Agreement Ukraine had to adopt two important laws: on the strategic environmental assessment and on environmental impacts. They are still lacking. Communities have commented on the draft strategy, and it is their voice that shall be decisive as to the disposition of the lands of communities.