EC allows Romania to use EUR 254 mln structural funds for Bucharest’s heating system
The European Commission (EC) has approved, in line with the EU's state aid rules, the Romanian authorities' plans to use EUR 254 million of its structural funds to modernize the heating distribution system in Bucharest.
"This EUR 254 mln aid measure, funded through the EU structural funds, will help Romania achieve its energy efficiency targets and help reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and other pollutants without unduly distorting competition," said EC Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager, responsible for competition policy.
Romania has presented to the Commission its plan for rehabilitating the heating system in Bucharest - particularly the pipes through which the hot water reaches the main distribution points in the city.
The Government will provide the expected support in the form of a grant directly financed from the EU structural funds.
Bucharest's heating system is the biggest in the European Union and the second-biggest in the world, serving 1.2 million inhabitants through about 940 km of pipes for the transmission (larger sized pipes) and 2,800 km of smaller-sized pipes for the distribution system.
The system's rehabilitation includes replacing some sections of the main hot water transport pipes, representing approximately 10% of the network's total length.
Thousands of Bucharest households have been left without heating and hot water this winter, sometimes for several days in a row, due to burst pipes and network failures.
(Photo: Octav Ganea/ Inquam Photos)