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Estonian TSO: Renewables cover more than third of Q3 energy consumption

A solar farm in rural Estonia.
A solar farm in rural Estonia. Source: Elering

From July through September this year, Estonian power plants generated a combined 620 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of renewable energy – up 2 percent on year. Electricity generated from renewable sources accounted for 36 percent of the country's total electricity consumption last quarter, Estonian transmission system operator (TSO) Elering announced Tuesday.

Over the first nine months of the year, renewable energy covered 35 percent of all electricity consumption and constituted 55 percent of Estonian electricity production, according to a press release.

The increase in renewable energy's share in total production was related to a decrease in the generation of electricity from fossil fuels. Both the share in renewables and production of solar power increased, however the generation of electricity from biomass was down on year.

In the third quarter, the volume of electricity from solar panels fed into the network totaled 261 GWh, subsidies for which amounted to €10.1 million. Thanks to the addition of new solar panels, solar power generation has increased by 17 percent on year.

The total capacity of solar panels installed in Estonia amounts to more than 700 megawatts (MW).

Electricity produced from biomass, biogas and waste, meanwhile, accounted for 35 percent of third quarter renewable energy. From July through September, these fuel types were used to generate a combined 219 GWh of electricity, for which €6.5 million in subsidies were paid.

Wind energy comprised 22 percent, or 139 GWh, of renewable energy generated last quarter, which is 37 percent more than in the same quarter last year and for which a combined €3.9 million in subsidies were paid.

Since the beginning of the year, subsidies have been paid for a combined 47 percent of the annual limit of 600 GWh of wind energy. Elering noted that it is projected that this 600-GWh ceiling will not be met this year.

In the third quarter of this year, just one GWh of hydroelectric power was generated, earning €36,000 in subsidies.

From July through September 2023, renewable energy producers in Estonia received a total of €21 million in subsidies – 8 percent less than during the same period last year. Subsidies for high-efficiency cogeneration last quarter totaled €539,000, marking an increase of 30 percent on year.

Subsidies for renewable energy and high-efficiency cogeneration are financed by electricity consumers via the renewable energy charge. To date this year, Elering has collected charges in the amount of €66.6 million and paid out €59.7 million in subsidies – up slightly from €66.1 million and down from €72.4 million, respectively, on year.

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Editor: Aili Vahtla

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