Estonia and Latvia join forces

In: Windfarms
Estonia and Latvia have signed a memorandum of understanding to develop a joint offshore wind farm in the Gulf of Riga.

According to Estonian Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, in order to meet the renewable energy target set for 2030, investments must be made in various renewable energy sources.

"The offshore wind farm area developed jointly by Estonia and Latvia is a unique project that contributes to the achievement of the countries' renewable energy goals and also creates new opportunities for other offshore park developments,"
he said.

According to Estonia's Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Taavi Aasa, it is important to build the wind farm together, because it provides an opportunity to apply for support from the European Union for a cross-border project.

"This, in turn, makes it cheaper to build other wind farms in the area, as other projects in the same area would also benefit from the grid infrastructure to be built for the park," said Aasa.

The two governments
previously met in December 2019 to discuss an offshore wind alliance. Latvian Minister of Economy Ralfs Nemiro and Aasa had agreed on the need for further project progress and decided that the next step was to develop guidelines for a collaborative project.

"It is extremely important for the Baltic region to work towards common goals as a strong alliance. I am very pleased that we have finally been able to achieve active cooperation between Latvia and Estonia in the development of a common renewable energy source,"
said Nemiro.

Through signing the MoU the two countries have agreed to jointly carry out studies to determine the best location for the construction of an offshore wind farm, taking into account wind conditions, plans, existing projects, environmental protection and all other factors. Once the necessary studies have been carried out and the permits have been obtained, an auction will be held for the offshore area with a building permit and the winner will be able to build an offshore wind farm in that area.

"The 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,"
said Aas.

The project will have a capacity up to 1000 MW and is expected to be operational by 2030. The wind farm would produce approximately 3.5 TWh of electricity per year, which is approximately 40% of Estonia's annual electricity consumption.

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