Environment activists block EUR 155 mln hydropower plant project in Romania

Two environment organizations, Bankwatch Romania and Neuer Weg, have managed to completely block for now the work on two hydropower plants on the Jiu river, in Western Romania.

The construction of the two power plants started in the early 2000s and was close to completion, but the Bucharest Court of Appeal decided to nullify the building permits at the request of the two organizations. The court’s decision is final and the state will likely have to put the two projects in conservation after having spent some EUR 155 million on them already, reports local Economica.net.

The two hydropower plants have an installed capacity of 65 MW, enough to supply some 100,000 households in Romania. However, the two NGOs argued that this project would represent the worst natural destruction project in Romania after 1989. The Jiului Valley is one of Romania’s decaying industrial areas after many of the coal mines in the region were closed.

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