State to launch record-breaking renewable energy procurement

An Eesti Energia-owned wind turbine at Virtsu, Lääne County.
An Eesti Energia-owned wind turbine at Virtsu, Lääne County. Source: Eesti Energia

Thursday marks the starting date of the largest ever procurement for renewable energy in Estonia, aiming to bring enough electricity to power some 150,000 households to the Estonian market.

"High electricity prices across Europe prove that we continue to be heavily dependent on fossil fuels. For this reason, it is important to bring more renewable energy production equipment to the market, which would contribute in reducing electricity prices," said Minister of Economic Affairs and Communications Taavi Aas (Center).

The economic affairs minister said the ministry is planning to bring 450 GWh of renewable electricity to the Estonian power system, which would cover the electricity consumption of some 150,000 households. "The reverse auction will also help Estonia in meeting its climate goals, which require 40 percent of the electricity consumption to be from renewable sources by 2030," Aas said.

Estonia has been able to reduce its carbon emissions by 70 percent since 1990, but still ranks among the top in the EU in terms of emissions. The country has also increased the amount of energy sourced from renewable energy.

While every other unit of heat comes from renewable sources, only every fourth unit of electricity comes from renewable sources, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications said. The tender aims to increase the production of renewable energy to 30 percent of consumption, also reducing carbon emissions.

"Using renewable energy is not only in the interest of the state, but it also has strong support," Aas said, pointing to a survey by pollster Kantar Emor, which shows that Estonians prefer to get their energy from renewable sources - 84 percent support the use of solar and 79 percent of the respondents supported the use of wind energy.

Renewable energy producers must present the necessary sum, for which they would produce electricity for the Estonian market and if the market price goes lower than the price guarantee, the state will cover the difference.

Elering is responsible for conducting the reverse auction and applications can be entered until June 1 2022. The winner must begin producing electricity by January 1 2026, at the latest.

The next state procurement for another 650 GWh will be opened in 2023, the economic affairs ministry announced.


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Editor: Kristjan Kallaste

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