A socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of nationwide and international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, youth, sporting, and cultural events.

The Roscongress Foundation is a socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of nationwide and international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, youth, sporting, and cultural events. It was established in pursuance of a decision by the President of the Russian Federation.

The Foundation was established in 2007 with the aim of facilitating the development of Russia’s economic potential, promoting its national interests, and strengthening the country’s image. One of the roles of the Foundation is to comprehensively evaluate, analyse, and cover issues on the Russian and global economic agendas. It also offers administrative services, provides promotional support for business projects and attracting investment, helps foster social entrepreneurship and charitable initiatives.

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Green Energy in the Far East. Supplying Energy to Remote and Isolated Areas of the Region
6 September 2022
17:15—18:45
KEY CONCLUSIONS
Green energy will help reduce the cost of supplying energy to remote and isolated regions in the Far East

Currently, the only available source of energy in isolated areas is diesel generation. Price is again a relative issue, and is mainly affected by the cost of transporting this fuel to the places it is needed. So, the success enjoyed by RusHydro in combining diesel with wind and solar installations – thereby reducing use of this fuel – is most interesting, and something that should be done as we move forward — Pavel Snikkars, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation.

We had the aim of reducing the amount of fuel brought in. Around RUB 5 billion is needed annually on diesel fuel alone in order to meet the needs of the Sakha Republic – that’s 143 isolated settlements — Roman Berdnikov, First Deputy General Director, Member of the Management Board, RusHydro.

We have four municipal districts in the decentralized energy supply zone. Every year, Primorye Territory spends about [RUB – ed.] 400 million of its budget on subsidizing tariffs for consumers. In fact, we are now approaching 500 million. <...> Yes, we don’t come under the Northern Delivery programme, which is a big plus, but still, the logistics are tough, and fuel costs are constantly rising — Elena Parkhomenko, Deputy Chairman of the Government of the Primorsky Territory.

The first two settlements where we launched our initiative are so far showing results. There’s around a 30–50% saving on fuel. <...> I don’t want to jinx things, but we are even a bit ahead of our plan to cut the volume of transported fuel — Roman Berdnikov, First Deputy General Director, Member of the Management Board, RusHydro.

We are currently looking into building a wind farm [in the Far East – ed.] and expect to reach an installed capacity of up to 30 megawatts, with the site being commissioned no later than 2027. <...> We believe that this will not only address environmental issues, but... also eliminate issues related to poor infrastructure development and reduce consumption of expensive diesel fuel — Viktor Svistunov, Deputy Director General, Technical and Regulatory Development, NovaWind.

Renewables can be employed to develop the hydrocarbon market in Russia

This year we commissioned the first solar power plant on Iturup Island. This is forming the basis of <...> our first climate-related project. The first carbon units will be issued, and these will be registered in the National Registry of Carbon Units. In so doing, we want to test and prove the readiness of the country’s infrastructure to move forward and start developing a national carbon market — Milena Milich, Acting Minister of Ecology and Sustainable Development of the Sakhalin Region.

ISSUES
Tax incentives and other forms of support are needed to help develop renewable energy sources

Over the past seven years – i.e., since the federal support programme was put in place – only around 23 megawatts [of renewable energy capacity – ed.] has been implemented [in the Far East – ed.]. For as long as we are seeing insufficient activity in the regions, we need to draw additional attention to this aspect and help the regions attract investors using various additional mechanisms — Alexey Zhikharev, Director, Russia Renewable Energy Development Association; Partner, Power Sector Practice, Vygon Consulting.

Looking ahead, if we want to launch this programme and make it widespread, we still need tax incentives and subsidized loans. When an investor comes to a bank, the bank sees energy service contracts as high-risk, and they [the banks – ed.] are very tough about giving out [loans – ed.] — Roman Berdnikov, First Deputy General Director, Member of the Management Board, RusHydro.

In fact, there are virtually no mechanisms in the Far East for developing the [energy sector – ed.]. We see a number of multidirectional trends here. Energy consumption is growing here, and some very ambitious industrial projects are being implemented. This is creating some major challenges when it comes to generation. And without having tools which are clear and predictable in terms of the economic side of these projects, investors will find it very difficult to plan. Indeed, it will be difficult to develop any kind of generation capacity, including in the renewable sector — Artur Alibekov, Chief Executive Officer, EcoEnergy.

Regions need to show an interest in developing renewable energy sources

We need to fine-tune the support programme and set targets for each region. That way we won’t just have national-level targets for increasing the share of renewable energy... It’s important that these targets are reflected at the regional level. What’s more, we need the support programme’s competitive selection process to be compulsory [for the regions – ed.]. We are currently only seeing certain regions taking the initiative, and of course, that does not help with bringing investors here and developing the green energy sector — Alexey Zhikharev, Director, Russia Renewable Energy Development Association; Partner, Power Sector Practice, Vygon Consulting.

The first thing [to do with developing geothermal sources – ed.] is related to administrative licensing procedures. This is primarily about licences. Each region plays a very important role in helping investors come to a solution as effectively, quickly, and optimally as possible. Without doing this, it’s impossible to start geological prospecting work, and consequently, to implement a new project — Vyacheslav Sinyugin, Deputy General Director for Digital Transformation and Energy Project of Zarubezhneft.

The range of equipment manufactured needs to be expanded

Why is it that, as I see it, the renewable energy support programme is not totally applicable to isolated areas? These are places where there’s more wind, say, than anywhere else, and where there is fairly good potential. The wind turbines themselves have a very high capacity per unit. So, we don’t need 2.5 megawatt units, 4.5 megawatt units, or 5 megawatt units [there – ed.] — Pavel Snikkars, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation.

SOLUTIONS
Companies are ready to localize production of renewable energy equipment, provided that demand is guaranteed

If the plan... to modernize inefficient power generation is delineated, and specific [requirements related to – ed.] capacity parameters set out... I think we will automatically see a degree of localization in the manufacturing sector — Alexey Zhikharev, Director, Russia Renewable Energy Development Association; Partner, Power Sector Practice, Vygon Consulting.

We appreciate that it is possible to scale things up and roll out [production – ed.], including in the Arctic, if the demand is there. There is currently no guaranteed demand for this work. These are what may be termed venture projects which are not yet protected by guaranteed product purchases — Artur Alibekov, Chief Executive Officer, EcoEnergy.

In my opinion, we need to look at the potential offered by technology in this area. The state is not willing to guarantee a return on investment without understanding what equipment will be employed — Pavel Snikkars, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation.

The regions should share experience, and investors should be ready to increase time frames for seeing returns on projects

We need to make a list of technologies, collate best regional practices, and develop a more‑or-less unified model for calculating return on investment — Pavel Snikkars, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation.

Although we are drawing up master plans for 10-year periods, we have a development programme covering the period to 2030 and a heat-supply plan covering the period to 2035. However, when we [the investor – ed.] start counting our investments, we look three years ahead, or five maximum — Pavel Snikkars, Deputy Minister of Energy of the Russian Federation.

The material was prepared by the Russian news agency TASS