The wind industry, through the Romanian Wind Energy Association – RWEA, launched an ambitious project of vocational training and reconversion for people in areas dependent on the coal power sector.
Specifically, it is about opening an Academy for Renewable Sources and Power Distribution in the Jiu Valley. The Academy aims to access the funds available through The Coal Regions in Transition Platform. Over the next 10 years, approximately 5,000 wind energy specialists and 3,000 electricians are to be trained. The project includes, together with RWEA, companies from the association, such as Monsson – RESS and CEZ Romania, but also the Ministry of Energy and the University of Petrosani.
RWEA representatives believe that the technical and professional skills of technicians in the mining sector are easily transferable to the renewable energy and the power distribution sectors, and certifications from training and reconversion courses will enable them to work in the installation, operation and maintenance of renewable projects and power grids around the world with attractive salary benefits.
“At a time when barriers to the energy transition have ceased to be economic, it becomes clear that this transition must be fair and equitable in order to be accepted by the whole of society,” said Claudia Brânduş, President of RWEA. “Romania has not only a significant potential for increasing the share of energy produced from renewable sources, but also the responsibility to ensure a future of the mining-dependent community that has contributed over time to the industrialization of the country. A successful energy transition includes modernizing the economies of coal-dependent regions and adapting to structural and technological changes to ensure a future for communities in these regions”, Brânduş said.
The RESS – Renewable Energy School of Skills Center in Constanta, which will be “cloned” in the Jiu Valley, has so far trained around 4,500 people at international standards (GWO – Global Wind Organization); this figure also includes those who are forced by standards to return to training each year for some specializations. They now ensure not only the maintenance of the 3,000 MW installed in the wind in Romania, but also outside the borders, developing a new concept and even a new term “wind-powered navigators”. “More than 95% of renewable energy specialists – mainly wind energy in Romania, work on a project basis abroad and return to Romania each month, generating venturi far above the average of the areas they come from,” says Monsson Development Director Sebastian Enache.