Estonia

Estonia

Estonia and Latvia sign pact for 1GW offshore wind farm

The Estonian and Latvian governments have agreed to jointly develop a 1GW wind farm in the Gulf of Riga that they claim could meet 40% of Estonia’s annual electricity consumption.

The Gulf of Riga, between Plienciems and Apšuciems, Latvia (pic credit: Christopher Voitus/Wikimedia Commons)
The Gulf of Riga, between Plienciems and Apšuciems, Latvia (pic credit: Christopher Voitus/Wikimedia Commons)

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They plan to assess wind resources, existing offshore projects and environmental considerations before choosing the best location for a site to offer at tender.

The countries’ energy ministries claim the 1000MW Gulf of Riga Gulf of Riga (1000MW) OffshoreEstonia, Europe Click to see full details project could be commissioned by 2030 and could produce 3.5TWh per year - enough to meet 40% of Estonia’s annual electricity consumption.

It would be among the first offshore wind farms built off each country.

The Estonian government approved building permits for three wind farms with a combined capacity of nearly 1.4GW in December 2019, and then appeared to drop its opposition to another 600MW project. Latvia currently has an empty offshore wind pipeline.

Jointly developing the project means the two countries could apply for support from the European Union as it would be a cross-border project, Estonia’s minister of economic affairs and infrastructure Taavi Aas said.

He added: “An open competition ensures equal treatment of market participants, the lowest possible price of renewable energy for consumers, and the efficient use of our marine resources.

“Additionally, a large offshore wind farm will contribute to the region’s security of electricity supply and help attract foreign investors.”

If built, the project could go towards meeting Estonia’s goal of sourcing 42% of its electricity consumption from renewables by 2030. However, it is not clear how output would be divided between Estonia and Latvia.

The Estonian government told Windpower Monthly that it planned to share costs and revenues equally, but did not answer whether the output from the wind farm would be split evenly between the two countries.

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