Pljevlja Power Station

From Global Energy Monitor

The Pljevlja power station is a 225-megawatt (MW) power station in Montenegro.

A second unit at Pljevlja, Pljevlja II Power Station, was proposed but cancelled in 2019.


The undated satellite photo below shows the power station in Pljevlja.

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Station Details

The power station is a single-unit of 225 MW operated by the Montenegro utility Elektroprivreda Crne Gore. It has been in operation since 1982 and is fueled by lignite coal. It is Montenegro's only coal-fired power station and supplies up to 30% of the country's electric power. Most fuel is supplied from two surface mines operated by Rudnik uglja ad Pljevlja. The older mine is Potrlica, where mining began in 1952. Sumani I is a newer mine with lesser-quality lignite coal.[1]

In November 2019, Elektroprivreda Crne Gore picked a consortium led by China’s Dongfang Electric International Corporation to refurbish the 225 MW plant to bring it in line with European Union pollution standards. The project, set to be completed by 2021, should also extend the lifespan of the plant by 20 years.[2]


The Montenegro government through its power utility Elektroprivreda Crne Gore (EPCG) plan to construct a new EUR 300 million, 220 MW lignite plant at the site of the existing Pljevlja lignite power plant in Pljevlja. The plant would use lignite from the nearby Pljevlja mine. As of 2013 the process of finding a strategic investor was ongoing.[3]

In April 2015 EPCG said it had chosen Czech engineering group Skoda Praha, owned by power utility CEZ, as preferred bidder to build the new coal-fired unit. Skoda Praha bid US$379 million to construct a 254-megawatt (MW) unit, while China Machinery Engineering Corporation (CMEC) offered US$376 million. Italian bank UniCredit will act as an adviser in selecting a possible partner to co-fund the project.[4]

Italy's A2A, a minority shareholder of Montenegrin utility EPCG with management rights in it, has resisted the idea of constructing the new coal plant.[5] However, the Government of Montenegro signed an agreement to continue cooperation with A2A on the plant. Construction is expected to start at the end of the year.[6]

In October 2016 it was reported that the Czech Export Bank and export credit agency EGAP had decided not to finance the project. It remains unclear who will fund it. According to Bankwatch, the project is financially unviable due to the EU Emissions Trading Scheme and declining costs of alternative energies relative to coal.[7]

In February 2017 the Environmental Protection Agency issued approval for the plant. In May 2017 Green Home, a Montenegrin environmental non-governmental organisation, submitted a complaint to the Administrative Court of Montenegro requesting the cancellation of the approval, saying it failed to include several elements stipulated by the Law on Environmental Impact Assessment, such as a justification for the decision, responses to comments provided during the public consultation, and a list of measures to address environmental damage during the construction and operation of the plant.[8]

In December 2017 the Montenegrin government terminated the contract with Skoda Praha to build the plant, leaving the project with no main contractor and no financing. Although Chinese company PowerChina has shown interest in the project, the Montenegrin government has decided to de-prioritise it for now, in favour of upgrading the existing plant to comply with its environmental obligations under the Energy Community Treaty.[9] However, the project has still not been officially cancelled.[10]

In May 2018 Chinese state owned company PowerChina, through its daughter company Sechuan Electric, sent an offer to the Montenegrin government for the construction of the TPP Pljevlja’s second block. The size is to be determined.[11]

In May 2019, EPCG Chairman Djoko Krivokapic said the construction of Pljevlja unit 2 is not a priority for the company, as it was focusing on renewable energy, namely wind and solar. EPCG is also planning to invest 60 million euros in environmental upgrades of TPP Pljevlja unit 1 by 2023.[12]

On September 18, 2019, Montenegrin Premier Duško Marković announced that the Government is no longer pursuing Pljevlja II: "we will build something in line with our economic policy, sustainable development and preservation of the environment," he said.[13]


The Montenegrin NGOs Green Home and MANS have criticised plans by the Montenegrin government to choose a strategic partner for Pljevlja II without conducting a proper tender, stating that instead the government planned to sign an intergovernmental agreement and enact a "special law" on the project, creating a legal loophole to move forward on Pljevlja II without proving its benefits.[3]

Project Details of expansion

  • Sponsor: Elektroprivreda Crne Gore
  • Parent company: Elektrivreda Crne Gore
  • Developer: Skoda Praha of CEZ
  • Location: Pljevlja, Montenegro
  • Coordinates: 43.334574, 19.327140 (exact)
  • Status:
    • Unit 1: Operating
    • Unit 2: Cancelled
  • Capacity:
    • Unit 1: 225 MW
    • Unit 2: 254 MW
  • Type: Supercritical
  • Start date:
  • Coal Type: Lignite
  • Coal Source: Pljevlja coal mine
  • Source of financing:

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