Utilization of renewable energy sources is one of the key mechanisms to ensure environmental safety, to reduce environmental impact and make efficient use of resources.
Renewable energy in the world continues to grow despite economic recessions, largely justifying analyst forecast scenarios and strategic benchmarks of several countries. The new branch is one of the drivers for technological, social and economic development of national economies.
LUKOIL is the only Russian oil company that for almost 10 years has been investing in renewable energy sources (RES), developing the modern generation technologies.
The main output is generated by hydroelectric power plants (HPP) in Russia, in addition to that, solar and wind generation is being developed. LUKOIL is using favorable conditions in the countries where the government provides support in this area, and implementing large-scale projects for the construction and operation of power plants generating electric power from renewable energy sources (Bulgaria and Romania).
Hydraulic power engineering is the most developed area of renewable power generation, both in Russia and within the Company. The main assets of the Group are located in Krasnodar Krai and Adygea Republic (four hydropower plants (HPP) with a total capacity of 297.8 MW, output of 639 GWh).
Belorechensk, Krasnaya Polyana, Maikop and Tsimlyansk HPP became part of the LUKOIL Group in 2008 (part of LLC LUKOIL-Ekoenergo). As a result of the completed modernization programs, electric power output has increased by almost 30%. The main objective of the Company today is to conduct further technical re-equipment of the existing generation facilities to step up their reliability and increase their capacity.
In 2015 the Belorechenskaya HPP reconstruction project was launched, to improve the overall performance.
This business is based on converting the kinetic energy of the air masses into electric or any other form of energy, which can be efficiently utilized for the benefit of the national economy.
The energy is transformed into electric power by means of wind turbines. The Company is developing the wind power engineering sector in cooperation with ERG Renew, which ranks among the top ten European wind power generating companies. A LUKERG Renew Joint Venture Establishment Agreement was signed in May 2011. In 2015, an Asset Separation Agreement was signed, according to which LUKOIL fully consolidated the Land Power wind farm (WPP) in Romania (capacity of 84 MW, output of 211 GWh).
The total capacity of wind power plants in Romania and Bulgaria is 208 MW.
A 40-MW Cherga operating wind power station was acquired in Bulgaria in June, 2012. The wind power station comprises 20 wind turbines, which were commissioned in 2009. In September, 2013, LUKERG Renew joint venture acquired two operating wind power stations: a 14-MW Hrabrovo station in Bulgaria and a 70-MW Gebeleisis station in Romania.
In 2013-2014 LUKERG Renew constructed the Land Power WPP in southeast Romania, equipped it with 42 wind turbines with a total rated capacity of 84 MW and generation of 211 kWh.
The electric power generated by the PPP in Romania is supplied to the power grid and paid for based on preferential tariff. All the generated electricity is sold based on general terms, besides, "green certificates" realizable at the specialized market are issued, which results in significant economic efficiency enhancement.
The Company uses the experience and expertise obtained during the implementation of international projects in the Russian Federation. New projects were being developed to construct wind power stations, including those as part of the wind diesel complexes located at Russian fields. A wind power unit was assembled in 2014 at Ozernoye field (Tatarstan Republic), which helped considerably reduce the imported diesel fuel consumption and mitigate the environmental impact.
Solar energy is an unexpendable source of energy, which is eco-friendly and generates zero hazardous waste. The Company is implementing a number of projects in this area. The largest PPPs are the 9MW PPP in Romania and the 1.25 MW PPP in Bulgaria. These PPPs are built on unused industrial sites of the refinery.
The most powerful PPP of LUKOIL (with the capacity of 9 MW) is located in Romania (Ploesti). It was commissioned in 2014 by S.C. LUKOIL Energy&Gas Romania S.R.L. It is located at S.C. Petrotel-LUKOIL S.A. refinery sites. The electric power generated by the PPP is supplied to the power grid and paid for under the special plan to support RES projects. All generated electric power is sold based on general terms, besides, "green certificates" realized at the specialized market are issued, which, consequently, results in significant economic efficiency enhancement. The 2015 actual generation volume by the PPP came to 11.75 mln. kWh in Romania.
The 1.25 MW PPP in Bulgaria was commissioned in 2011. Its annual actual output in 2015 came to 1.47 mln. kWh. The electric power generated by the PPP is supplied to the power grid and paid for based on preferential tariff.
Besides, the LUKOIL Group entities have implemented a number of pilot projects aimed at utilizing solar collectors for hot water supply and heating of filling stations and administrative buildings. The short payback period of such systems opens up the prospects of using them at many facilities of the Company. A solar collector system can reduce power consumption by 30% to 50% per year.
By now, the Company has accumulated positive experience in the heating and cooling of certain production facilities by using low-grade heat sources, including soil, water, air, as well as secondary thermal resources resulting from human activities. To do this, heat pumps (HP) are applied. The heating systems based on heat pumps are efficient, they do not emit harmful substances, are very safe and reliable, and have a long service life and do not require great operating expenses. Utilization of heat pumps results in generation of around 3 to 7 kW of thermal power per 1 kW of spent electric power. As of today, a number of similar projects have been implemented, and the Company plans to continue to use them at new filling stations and tank farms of the LUKOIL Group.