Energetically for a Healthy Life
This company, a true energy giant, has already invested 70 million EUR in environmental protection projects, and it is planning to invest another 440 million by 2017. Plants have been revitalized and their service life has been extended, production and energy efficiency were increased, emission of hazardous gases was drastically reduced... The most significant environmental project in the Balkans is still ahead: construction of the plant for desulphurization of flue gases

Long ago, the leaders of Thermal Power Plant ”Nikola Tesla” in Obrenovac have restored the glory of the biggest and the most productive thermal power plant in the Balkans. Now they have also surpassed others in this field in the area of environmental protection, not only in the Balkan region. They have started to implement regulations of the European Union, in many elements long before it became their legal obligation. And so, looking into the future, they systematically care of cleanliness of air and soil, and are paving the road for other to do the same. And with their production results and total power, TENT (popular acronym for this company) is the most reliable stronghold of Serbian power industry.
In the past decade, thanks to significant investments and great commitment to work, annual production here was increased by more than 3.5 billion kilowatt hours. Behind this is effort of 2,600 employees, among which two with PhD degrees and 261 employees with university degrees. They increased the power of blocks, extended their service life, for the same quantity of electric power they reduce the consumption of coal and emission of hazardous gases. In order to achieve all this, 450 million EUR was invested, half of it from the budget of the Electric Power Distribution of Serbia, and the other half from donations.
– Our most important projects in the field of environmental protection were introduction of a new system for de-ashing, transportation and disposal of ashes, as well as reconstruction of electric filter – says for National review engineer Đorđi Biljanovski, Deputy Director of TENT. – The work was neither easy nor simple. This far, 70 billion EUR was invested in environmental protection projects. In order to complete everything in accordance with the plan, I hope by 2017, we need to invest another 440 million EUR. True, our work was made much easier thanks to our first director Bogoljub Urošević Crni, the builder of Serbian electric power industry, a great visionary who foresaw so many things half a century ago. Even at that time the company was taking care about protecting the environment, but on the technological level of that time.
TENT is today the first thermal power plant in the system of EPS that has established and implemented three quality standards: ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and ISO 18001. The crown of environmental modernization, adds Biljanovski, will be the most complex and the most expensive in this package of projects: construction of flue gas desulphurization plant.
– Within former investments, significant funds came from donations. The system for collecting transport and disposal of ashes was worth 32 million EUR, out of this 28 million from donations of the EU (through European Agency for Reconstruction). New technology decreases the blowing of ashes, which is now mixed with water in ratio 1:1 (this ratio used to be 1:10). Thanks to this, 1.7 million tons of water now goes into the soil, as opposed to previous 20 million tons.


Modernization of electric filter plants followed only after the fireboxes were reconstructed and all plants ”slicked”, in order to improve combustion and increase energy efficiency.
– Emission of solid particles is reduced within limits prescribed by European standards: 50 milligrams per cubic meter of flue gas – says Biljanovski. – About 36 million EUR was invested in the reconstruction of filters in blocks TENT A1, A2, A4, A5, A6 and TE ”Kolubara” A5, and the level of emission of dust for the entire PD TENT is reduced by 80 percent against 2002. Currently in progress is reconstruction of electric filter plant on block two in TENT B2, which has power of 629 megawatts. EU allocated 5.5 million EUR for this, and EPS four million. As soon as this is finished, we will begin modernization of Block B1, the second largest in the region.
Although we have just started in this direction, it is important to emphasize efforts of experts of TENT in resolving the problem of emission of nitrogen oxides. Currently in progress is introduction of primary measures at Block A5 (change of fireboxes, coal burners, adding tertiary air...) in order to reduce such pollution. If this proves to be successful, such a project will be realized in other blocks as well. Otherwise, more expensive procedures will be implemented.
The most valuable and the most expensive project in the field of environmental protection in the Balkans – construction of the plant for desulphurization of flue gases in four blocks of TENT A – will start next year.
– After signing intergovernmental agreement between Serbia and Japan, in the amount of 250 million EUR, preparation of preliminary design and feasibility study has begun. Additionally, a draft loan agreement has been prepared. This is assistance of the government of Japan to our country for this ecological project. Terms and conditions of the loan are very favorable, the grace period is five years, and loan repayment period is 15 years. Interest is 0.6 percent, and the funds must be withdrawn within the next 10 years. In accordance with our laws, the project must be completed by 2017, and in accordance with European regulations, by 2018. That is quite enough time to realize everything properly.
Currently in progress is tender procedure, and international open call should be announced in June next year.


– A part of ashes we deliver to cement plants ”Lafarž” and ”Holcim”, but these are small quantities compared to how much is generated in our production process – explains engineer Đorđi Biljanovski. – Many thermal power plants in the world do not have ash dumps, because total quantity of ashes is used in civil engineering (road builders use especially large quantities). I hope that one day it will be the same here. Until then, we are planning to build a system foe ash and slag disposal by 2015 on location of thermal power plant ”Nikola Tesla A”, which is an investment worth about 45 million EUR.


Health and responsibility
– Investments in environmental projects are necessary, both because of legal requirements and because of the efforts of our company to be socially responsible. The ultimate results of these efforts are healthier environment and great savings of money that we would otherwise have to pay for expensive remedy procedures. Emission of powdered materials in air is reduced by six times against 2003, when these projects have begun. Namely, from 24,000 tons of ashes totally discharged through stacks, it was reduced to only 4,000 tons – concludes Deputy Director of TENT.


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