Estonia Should End Oil Shale Electricity Production by 2050, Says Minister ({{contentCtrl.commentsTotal}})

A forest on Vormsi island.
A forest on Vormsi island. Source: (Postimees/Scanpix)

Environment Minister Keit Pentus-Rosimannus, tasked last week with drawing up a strategy to cut carbon dioxide emissions by half by 2050, said the nation has to use oil shale more efficiently and that does not include burning the resource to make electricity.

The government decided last week that the nation needs a holistic strategy to cut CO2 emissions by an overall total of 75 percent from 1990 levels, meaning that emissions must be cut from its current rate of 20 million tons per year to 10 million, Eesti Päevaleht reported today.

Pentus said producing electricity from oil shale releases the most CO2 compared to producing shale oil, for example, adding that electricity can still be produced, but from gasses released during the process of producing shale oil.

She said bio energy, especially wood, can be better utilized as currently around one million cubic meters of wood goes to waste each year, and apartment buildings can be better insulated, saving 30 to 40 percent on heating bills.

The strategy is expected to be ready for Parliament approval by the end of 2016.

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