Coal Fired Thermal Power Plant in Porto Romano, Albania


The conflict is over an Industrial and Energetic Park at Porto Romano located near Durres – the second largest city in Albania – that includes a thermal power plant, marine facilities and distribution lines connecting the plant with Tirana and Italy. Enel, the main Italian power company, had planned to construct a 1,600MW coal-fired TPP with permission from the Ministry of Environment once the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) had been prepared and disclosed and public consultations had been organized.

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Basic Data
NameCoal Fired Thermal Power Plant in Porto Romano, Albania
Accuracy of LocationHIGH local level
Source of Conflict
Type of Conflict (1st level)Fossil Fuels and Climate Justice/Energy
Type of Conflict (2nd level)Thermal power plants
Specific CommoditiesCoal
Project Details and Actors
Project DetailsAccording to the project's EIA, the station would consist of two 800 MW coal-fired units, a jetty for handling the imported coal, a transmission line connecting the local substation to Tirana's main substation, and an undersea transmission line linking the facility with Italy. Eighty-five percent of the electricity produced would be exported to Italy.

Electricity output per year will be about 13 TWh – twice as much as all the electricity produced in and imported to Albania in 2005, showing the enormous scale of the project.

The TPP would burn coal delivered to the site by boat, using a

new 950 metre long pier adjacent to the site fence. Coal consumption would be about 240 t/h for each unit. For about 8000 hours per year of operating time, the total quantity of coal used every year by the TPP will be about 3,850,000 tonnes (consumption for two units). South African coal has been considered as the reference fuel.

According to the EIA the TPP would produce 44,800 tonnes of bottom ashes and 401,600 tonnes of fly ashes annually. According to the EIA the Suspended Particulate Matter emission rates from wind erosion of the piles in the two stock areas would be 0.281 kg/h for coal and 0.0398 kg/h for limestone.

The CO2 emissions from the TPP would be 1,166 tonnes per hour, that for 8,000 hours of operation annually amounts to 9 328 000 tonnes/year. The current CO2 emissions of Albania are 5.5 million tonnes 11 without LUCF 12, so the emissions from the power plant would bring Albania to almost 15 million tonnes. This means that the GHG emissions of Albania would be increased 2.5 times compared to current emissions, and this as a result of only one TPP.
Project Area (in hectares) 80
Type of PopulationRural
Start Date01/01/2008
Company Names or State EnterprisesENEL Group (Enel) from Italy
Relevant government actorsAlbanian Government, Albanian Council for Territorial Adjustment , Ministry of Environment, Forests and Water Administration of Albania
International and Financial InstitutionsEuropean Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD)
European Investment Bank (EIB)
Environmental justice organisations and other supportersEkolevizja, a coalition of Albanian environmental NGOs, CEE Bankwatch Network

the Municipality of Durres
The Conflict and the Mobilization
Intensity of Conflict (at highest level)LOW (some local organising)
When did the mobilization beginPREVENTIVE resistance (precautionary phase)
Groups MobilizingInternational ejos
Local ejos
Local government/political parties
Local scientists/professionals
Forms of MobilizationCreation of alternative reports/knowledge
Development of alternative proposals
Involvement of national and international NGOs
Objections to the EIA
Public campaigns
Appeals/recourse to economic valuation of the environment
Environmental ImpactsPotential: Air pollution, Biodiversity loss (wildlife, agro-diversity), Food insecurity (crop damage), Global warming, Loss of landscape/aesthetic degradation, Noise pollution, Soil contamination, Waste overflow, Surface water pollution / Decreasing water (physico-chemical, biological) quality
Health ImpactsPotential: Accidents, Occupational disease and accidents, Other environmental related diseases
Socio-economic ImpactsPotential: Increase in Corruption/Co-optation of different actors, Displacement, Loss of livelihood, Land dispossession
Project StatusPlanned (decision to go ahead eg EIA undertaken, etc)
Pathways for conflict outcome / responseStrengthening of participation
Under negotiation
Development of AlternativesThe EIA study addresses a minimum of alternatives. Typical categories of alternatives that should have been included are:

1. Site location alternatives: Three locations are taken into consideration: Porto Romano, Shengjin and Vlore. The locations are all on the Adriatic coast, and it seems that no other locations have been taken into consideration due to higher investment costs for the transmission lines.

2. Design (fuel and technology) alternatives for the site

No other design alternative has been considered in the EIA. There may have been different technologies, or different fuels, but it seems that, due to the fact that coal provides the cheapest solution (if externalities and carbon costs are not to be paid), coal has a head start over other fuels.

3. Construction, operation, and decommissioning alternatives for the design: No alternatives have been considered regarding the decommissioning of the plant.

4. ‘No-project’ or ‘no-action’ alternatives

These alternatives have not been considered in the study.

5. Timing alternatives relative to project construction, operation, and decommissioning

These alternatives have not been considered in the study.

The EBRD on behalf of the Ekolevizija coalition, call upon the bank:

• Not to consider the Porto Romano TPP for finance.

• To prioritize sustainable energy projects, particularly in the field of renewable energy and energy efficiency, when it comes to review its three-year investment strategy for Albania at the end of this year.

• To encourage the Albanian government to find a solution for the energy security of the country via

sustainable investments such as renewable energy and energy efficiency.
Do you consider this as a success?Not Sure
Why? Explain briefly.The Municipality of Durres declared itself officially against the project in April 2009, but the project has not been scrapped yet.
Sources and Materials

Porto Romano thermo power plant (NGO Issue Paper )
[click to view]

Over the edge / Enel’s plans to export its pollution to Porto Romano, Albania (April 2010)
[click to view]


Albanian NGOs Seek to Scrap Power Plant (April 2009)
[click to view]

South-East European INDUSTRIAL Мarket - issue 4/2009, October
[click to view]

WB funded clean-up in Porto Romano
[click to view]

Porto Romano Power Station
[click to view]

Meta Information
ContributorKatarina; [email protected]
Last update07/11/2014