Electricity consumption in Latvia drops to five-year minimum; price remains high

In September there was a significant drop in consumption of electricity, reaching the lowest point since June 2017. A total of 531 379 MWh of electricity was consumed in Latvia, which is 6.8% less when compared to August and 9.7% less when compared to September 2021, according to information from Augstsprieguma tīkls JSC (AST).
Consumption changes are related to the previously observed electricity price increase – in August Latvia observed the peak price since the liberalisation of the market, notes AST, adding that this is the reason why efforts were put into finding ways to reduce consumption.
A drop in consumption is also observed in other Baltic States and Scandinavia, according to the report prepared by AST for Latvia’s electricity market.
The drop in consumption also came from use of micro-generators, such as solar panels – while in September 2021 the power output of micro-generators was 16 MW in September 2022 it was 80 MW.

In total 201 135 MWh of electricity was generated in Latvia in September, which is 22% less when compared to August and 38% less when compared to September 2021.

In September 2022 Daugava hydro electric power plant generated 28% less energy than it did in August. Large CHP plants generated 27% less energy, wind turbine parks produced 11% more energy, and biomass power plants generated 6% less. Biogas power plants generated 2% less energy, as reported by AST.
Although electricity consumption in Latvia has dropped unexpectedly low in recent years, generation has gone down as well. Local electricity generation was able to cover 38% of domestic consumption, which is the lowest index since August 2021.

According to AST, the remaining energy volume – 330 244 MWh – was imported from neighbouring countries.

In September 2022 the average electricity price in Latvia’s trade region dropped to 350.99 EUR/MWh which is 25% lower when compared to August and 184.2% higher when compared to September 2021.
Although electricity price drop between 25% and 35% was observed in Baltic States in September, electricity prices remain high and have not dropped below the level observed in July.
The price drop was mainly related to the drop in prices of energy resources, especially natural gas, as well as a slight drop in CO2 emission quotas. The drop in consumption also contributed to the price going down.
Compared to August, imports of electricity to Baltic States went down 10%, which was caused by an 8.6% consumption drop after the hot August. Baltic States imported 63% less electricity from Poland and 11% less from Sweden. Imports from Finland have increased only slightly.
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