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SISTEMELE DE ALIMENTARE CENTRALIZATĂ CU ENERGIE TERMICĂ DIN ROMÂNIA. O ANALIZĂ PRELIMINARĂ SWOT

Ovidiu ŢUŢUIANU

Abstract

The supply of thermal energy, for heating the premises and preparing hot water for consumption purposes, is vital for ensuring the living conditions, health and labour capacity among the population. In the case of urban areas, the international practice has proven that this goal may be achieved in conditions of continuity, quality (thermal comfort), fuel savings and reduced impact onto the environment, by the use of District Heating Systems (DHS). The DHS is a functional technological assembly that comprises: a) thermal power plants (TPP) or combined heat and power plants (CHP), currently referred to as cogeneration plants; b) transportation networks; c) heating points/ substations; d) distribution networks; e) ancillary buildings and installations; f) connections to the main supply, up to the installation delineation/separation points; g) measurement, control and automation systems. In 1990, 251 thermal energy suppliers were active, that were providing heating to 3 million household users. After this year, given the social and political changes that Romania underwent, the status of HDS became increasingly critical, year after year. The industrial and overall downturn of the economy, the errors in establishing the fuel and thermal energy prices, the non-payment of invoices and subsidies, the financial blockage, the non-attractive legislation and the unsatisfactory level of thermal comfort, led to the disconnection of users from the district heating systems. Thus, in 2009, only 104 suppliers were still active, that were providing heating to 1.5 million household users, while the current situation is even more severe. As a matter of fact, at present, unlike the supply of users with electricity – an activity that is conducted according to European standards, the supply of thermal energy is a severe problem to be yet settled even in the urban area – while completely ignored in the rural areas. The paper presents an application of the SWOT analysis that is focussed on 12 decisive elements for the performance of DHS. Each of the elements referred to above is subject to an assessment in terms of: Strengths; Weaknesses; Opportunities and Threats/Constraints. Recommendations for improving the current situation are presented in the end.

Keywords

SWOT analysis, thermal energy (heating), District Heating System (DHS)

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