Romania’s use of primary energy down 9.2% y/y in 2013

By bne IntelliNews February 12, 2014

The use of primary energy resources in Romania decreased by 9.2% y/y to 30.96mn tonnes of oil equivalent (toe) in 2013, the statistics office informed. The use of resources stagnated around 30-30.2mn toe during the recession years 2009-2012, down from over 41mn toe in 2006-2007.

The lower energy consumption in 2013 occurred despite the stronger economic and particularly industrial activity compared to the previous years. The GDP expanded by some 2.5-3%, while the gross industrial production advanced by 7.6% y/y in Jan-Nov (latest available data).

The primary resources covered by the short-term series do not include wind and solar energy, which are accounting for an increasing share in total as more production capacities are coming online. This might explain part of the decrease in the use of monitored primary resources.

The statistics office told IntelliNews in an email that the solar and wind farms are going to be included in the monthly primary energy readings starting January 2014. Biomass will continue to be reflected only in full-year energy balances, the office explained. Biomass is largely used in rural areas where it accounts for the main heating source.

Less coal and natural gas was used in 2013 – while the use of hydropower recovered to normal levels in 2013. Some 26.5% [1.9mn toe] less coal was burned in thermal plants where an overall 5.28mn toe were used. The natural gas intake declined by 1.11mn toe [by 10.3% y/y] to 9.77mn toe – remaining the main primary energy resource of the country. Less than 11% of the natural gas was from import.

The lower gas intake was also caused by the subdued activity of thermal power plants – but probably mainly due to the shutting down of large industrial consumers in the chemical industry. The internal use of crude oil increased slightly by 1.8% y/y [0.17mn toe] to 9.17mn toe, accounting for the second largest primary energy resource. Most of the oil was from import [58%].

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