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Share of renewable energy grows to almost 15 pct in 2012

Estonian news - eteap January 28, 2013

Baltic News Service, 28.01.2013

Renewable energy accounted for 14.9 percent of the total amount of electric energy consumed in Estonia during 2012, 2 percentage points more than in 2011, the transmission system operator Elering said.

The percentage that renewable energy makes up of total energy consumption already now exceeds the goals set for the coming few years in the explanatory letter to the bill of amendments to the Electricity Market Act that is being handled by the parliament, Elering said. The target set by the explanatory letter for 2013 is 11.3 percent, whereas according to a forecast by producers the percentage of renewable energy will be 12.6 not considering the amount generated using biomass at the Narva plants.

Altogether 1.37 terawatt-hours of electricity was produced using renewable sources during 2012, 18 percent more than a year ago. The biggest contributor to renewable generation was biomass, the amount of electricity produced from which grew 15 percent year on year to 880 gigawatt-hours. The amount of electricity generated using biomass fell in September when large scale burning of biomass at the Narva plants of the state-owned energy group Eesti Energia was ended.

The amount of wind energy generated during the year grew by 23 percent or 83 gigawatt-hours as several new wind farms, such as those of Aseriaru, Paldiski and Tuhavalja went into operation. The subsidy paid on wind energy meanwhile declined 7 percent as a result of significantly lower efficiency of wind generating facilities due to poorer wind conditions in 2012.

Records taken on the Pakri peninsula and at Virtsu showed the daily average wind speed as having been significantly lower in 2012 than in 2011. Some of the new wind farms that went into operation during the year did not get any subsidy yet and the sums received by the new generating capabilities did not balance off the overall reduction in subsidies.

The amount of renewable energy on which renewable energy support was paid during the year was 1.17 terawatt-hours. The sum total paid out grew by about one-tenth to 62.7 million euros.

Of high-efficiency cogeneration support 4.3 million euros was paid out during the year, nearly 11 percent less than in 2011. The amount of energy receiving the support dropped from 147 gigawatt-hours to 132 gigawatt-hours. The major energy producers working in high-efficiency cogeneration mode produced on the average 11 percent less energy in high-efficiency cogeneration mode than a year ago, whereas the use of biomass at their stations increased by approximately as much.

In the final quarter of last year renewable energy accounted for 12.6 percent of the total amount of energy consumed in Estonia, compared with 16.9 percent in the final quarter of 2011.


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