Miercurea Ciuc is situated in the eastern part of Transylvania, in Hargita County. Csikszereda is the county seat of Hargita County. Around the town there are volcanic mountain ranges called the Hargita and Csik Mountains, at the crossing of the roads which pass through the Carpathian Passes of Tolvajos (Vlăhiţa) and Gyimes. The town is situated on the banks of the river Olt, at the foot of the Nagysomlyó Mountain (1033m). The altitude of the town is between 655m and 730m above the sea level.
The city administers five peripheral areas:
- Ciba / Csiba
- Harghita-Băi / Hargita-fürdő
- Jigodin-Băi / Zsögöd-fürdő, including Jigodin / Csíkzsögöd
- Şumuleu Ciuc / Csíksomlyó
- Taploca / Taploca
Miercurea Ciuc has a temperate continental climate. The yearly average temperature in the city is 5.9 C: during winter the average is -5.9 C and during summer is 16 C. The yearly average precipitation is 589 mm. Due to the fact that Miercurea Ciuc is located in a basin, thermal inversion is a very common phenomenon and also a very common thing is the foggy weather.
According to the census of 2011, there were 37,980 people living in the city. Of this population, 81.39% are ethnic Hungarians, while 17.4% are ethnic Romanians, 0.9% are ethnic Romas and 0.33% declare other nationalities.
The main branches of industry in the city are: textile-, furniture-, cloth-, and food industry. Producing and commercializing construction materials is also among the most important incomes of the region. The most important factory is a beer brewery, currently owned by the Heineken Romania company, where near internationally commercialized beers, local beers are also brewed. After the revolution in 1989, many state-owned factories stopped their activities, leaving a relatively big industrialized area empty in the south west border area of the city.
Agriculture is becoming a distinct activity, only few families are relying on the field crops. Mostly these families are living in the neighbouring areas, which are administered by city council. An energy willow plantation was planted in the western periphery of the city, with less success. Near that keeping riding halls can be considered as commercial agriculture in Miercurea Ciuc. The city and each village in its administration has its own commonage, they are managing the neighbouring forests.
The city is connected to the railroad system since 1897. The street network of the city had 120 street, with 70,1 km total length, in 2002. The surface of the roadways is 50375 m2 and the surface of the walkways is 16145 m2. Since 2002 many investments started and were completed regarding renewal of the city’s street network. Due to the latest investments the city has a quite good bicycle road network, which is very uncommon in most Romanian cities. Since 2011 the city centre and the public park were renewed, it was arranged into a more pedestrian friendly area, with speed limits for cars and many roundabouts to slow down car traffic.
Energy related situation:
|Waste management||Eco Csik SRL, the waste management company, where the biggest shareholder is the city, is managing a 30 million EUR big project, which consists of closure of old landfill sites building new ones in accordance to EU regulations and developing a selective waste collection system.|
|RES||“Termoficare căldură şi confort” program of the Ministry of Internal Affairs: 6 pellet fired boilers were installed in three different heating centres of the district heating network. PV powered public lightning is installed in two streets in the city, from own funds.|
|Energy efficiency or rational use of energy||Thermal insulation of buildings, program of the Ministry of Development: around 49 flats were insulated.|
|Conduit water management||The water management is operated by Harviz SA company. The city, along with other local governments of the neighboring villages, started a Development Association, to be able to absorb EU funds on sewer system and water supply network development. This association founded the Harviz SA company, which is the operator of the sewer and water supply system of Miercurea Ciuc.|
|Public Transport||The public transport of the city is provided by a bus company, the Csiki Trans SRL. This company has 4 small Mercedes Benz buses with 30 persons capacity, and 2 bigger MAN busses with 60 person capacity. The city has seven different bus lines, covering the whole administrative area of the municipality. This is also a city owned company.|
|Energy agency or energy manager||The city doesn’t have an energy agency or an energy manager. The only energy agency is the Harghita Energy Management Public Service which is a regional energy agency, as a subordinated institute of the county council.|
|public lighting||Miercurea Ciuc has around 60 km long cable network above ground level and 30 km long cable network underground, for public lighting, consisting around 2700 light bulbs. Around 600 bulbs are old fashioned Sodium and Mercury Vapor lamps, which are consuming 400 W and 200 W of electricity. The rest of the lamps are economic bulbs with 70 W and 35 W of energy consumption. The total capacity of all the lamps in the city is around 300 kW.|
|district heating||9000 apartments and many other institutions are connected to the city’s district heating system which is operated by GOSCOM SA, a company owned by the municipality. Currently 15 heating centers are operational, the total length of pipes is 26,61 km, 60% of them are renovated. Only the 50% of the system is used, because a lot of families disconnected from the system, due to the bad quality services and high prices of the central heating system.|
|public buildings||The majority of public buildings are schools and administrative buildings. Nearly all of them has their own heating system, mostly natural gas fired boilers. None of them are thermal insulated, but a lot of windows were changed to thermopan.|
|buildings||49 residential buildings (flats) are insulated. The age of the houses is the following: 3% younger than 10 years, 7% between 10-20 years, 37% between 20-40 years, 28% 40-55 years, 25% older than 55 year. 55 percent of energy consumption of these buildings is for heating.|
|heat and energy supply||7200 apartments are connected to the district heating system, in total 9000 buildings are supplied from here, including companies, public buildings, and houses. The rest of the buildings has their own heating systems, mostly natural gas fired boilers, only few biomass boilers. Many disconnected apartments installed small natural gas fired boilers, which is a relatively cheap and popular solution.Since the municipality doesn’t have its own electricity producing capacity all of the buildings are connected to the national electricity grid.|
|heat and energy||Currently there are 15 natural gas fired heating centers, three of them has pellet fired boilers too. The produced energy in 2012 was 58000 Gcal, from which 51500 was consumed by house owners, the rest by companies and other institutions.|
|status of the pipeline||The district heating system was built between 1968 and 1972. The length of the system is 26,61 km, 72% of the pipeline was changed to modern thermal insulated pipes. The heat losses in pipes, according to studies, were decreased from 48% to 19,3%, with the renovations in the renovated areas.|
Energy goals: The following public institutions (belonging to the municipality) have their own source of energy (gas boiler): theatre, museum, horticulture, 5 schools, 3 kindergartens, Town Hall building. The proper insulation of these buildings would mean major savings for the city, as well as replacing the existing boilers into high efficiency boilers.
For introducing the application of sustainable energy the Goscom Ltd. is in charge. The company has launched and continues to launch techniques that encourage people to use sustainable energy.
The Goscom Ltd. has more sustainable energy related projects in progress:
- Use of biomass (as fuel)
- Use of cogeneration
The town would establish a boiler house with a biomass boiler for the “Kós Károly” high-school, which would supply the buildings of the school and would provide heating for the horticulture located in the vicinity.
RES potential: The most important RES potential is in wood, biomass and solar energy.
Miercurea Ciuc did not sign the CoM yet and they have no SEAP yet.
Miercurea Ciuc has as twinning partner La Zubia municipality from Spain.
Webpage of the city: www.szereda.ro