The heating system of three multi-apartment residential buildings from Chisinau will be modernized, with UNDP support

The horizontal distribution system may generate savings up to 30% to heating and hot water services

Posted February 2, 2022

The heating system of three multi-apartment residential buildings from Chisinau will be modernized this year. So, the vertical distribution of thermal energy will be switched to a horizontal one, which is more efficient. The pilot project is supported by UNDP Moldova and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) and implemented by Green City Lab Moldova and Termoelectrica JSC.

Thanks to the new distribution system, owners of the apartments will have the possibility to connect, disconnect and regulate heating all year round, according to their needs. They will have a trilateral contract with the housing management entity and the utility provider, as well as their own meter to monitor consumption. The new system will be used for the centralized distribution of hot water. The implemented measures may generate savings to the bills of up to 30%.

Most of the multi-apartment residential buildings from Chisinau that are connected to the heating system apply the vertical distribution, with an operating period of more than 40 years. It was designed back into the soviet period and does not correspond to energy efficiency standards. The vertical system does not allow apartments’ owners to regulate their heat consumption, and the bills are issued based on the overall consumption, registered by the building’s thermal connector. The payment is done via the housing management entity, that divides the total amount between individual consumers, according to several criteria, including apartment area.

Several residents of the three multi-apartment residential buildings selected for the pilot project disconnected from the centralized hot water service. They prepare their hot water with electric boilers, which is a much more expensive and not energy efficient option.

Now, they will benefit from qualitative hot water central service from the centralized heating system, which is cheaper than using the electric stations or boilers. Each apartment will have separate heat and hot water meters, and the bills will be issued according to the actual individual consumption.

The multi-apartment residential buildings from Chisinau benefiting from the pilot project were selected considering several technical and legal criteria, including over 50% of residents' consent to connect to the new system. Overall, there are 178 apartments in the selected buildings. Two of the buildings are located on Milescu-Spataru street, and one is on Calea Iesilor street.

Termoelectrica JSC, the largest thermal energy provider in Moldova, will ensure the design and installation of individual heating points for each building, as well as of the distribution infrastructure. The residents who will connect to the new heating distribution system will be eligible to receive financial support through energy performance contracts. These will allow consumers to repay their investments from savings on their bills in the next six years.

The contributions planned for this pilot project are about US$90,000 from UNDP Moldova and GEF, and about $200,000 from Temoelectrica JSC. The new system will be operational beginning with the next heating season. The pilot project launched in the three residential buildings will be replicated.

The horizontal distribution system can be applied to at least 80% of Moldova's housing stock connected to the central heating system. More than 70% of multistorey apartment buildings from Chisinau have deficient energy performance, and energy loss accounts for up to 50% of heating consumption.

Contact for mass-media: Gheorghe Riciu, Communications and Media Officer, "Moldova Sustainable Green Cities" project, UNDP Moldova, 069753015, gheorghe.riciu@undp.org