Electricity Transmission System Operators in Latvia and Estonia, AS Augstsprieguma tikls (AST) and Elering AS, have signed a cooperation agreement to investigate possible ways to evacuate power from planned offshore wind farms in the Baltic Sea and connect them to onshore transmission systems in both countries.
Operators informed that preliminary analysis of the route of the submarine cables under the waters of the Gulf of Riga and off the west coast of Latvia and Estonia has already been performed. However, in order to make final decisions, it is necessary to conduct more detailed research.
– Latvia is also bound by a joint commitment of Europe to achieve the goals of the climate policy or increase the share of energy from renewable sources in line with the assumptions of the National Plan for Energy and Climate until 2030. Building offshore wind farms is one way to achieve these goals. Transmission system operators are responsible for ensuring the appropriate infrastructure. Joint offshore wind farm projects with our neighbors will allow both to increase the security of energy supply and to reduce the costs of activities related to the implementation of environmental goals – said Gatis Junghāns, member of the AST board.
Estonia and Latvia are considering a joint 700-1000 MW offshore wind farm (ELWIND) project to be completed until 2030. Taking into account that the investment would involve two countries, it could be classified as a regional project with the possibility of future financing from CEF RES (The Connecting Europe Facility of Renewable Energy). Details and terms of financing the investment are to be known after 2022.
On September 18, 2020, the energy ministries of Estonia and Latvia signed a memorandum of understanding, under which both countries plan a joint offshore wind farm with a capacity of up to 1000 MW until 2030. The construction of an offshore wind farm is also planned by Eesti Energia and Ørsted, which signed in 2021 agreement on cooperation.
Estonia and Latvia are not the only Baltic states willing to obtain energy from offshore wind farms. Lithuania also has plans in this regard, which wants to have installations with a capacity of up to 700 MW until 2030, and the first energy from offshore farms would be delivered already in 2028. Offshore wind farm can cover up to a quarter of the energy used in this country.