Latvia’s energy production output meets and exceeds demand in 2021

According to JSC Latvenergo, at the end of the year Latvia was the only Baltic State that managed to satisfy its domestic energy demand, exporting the excess to other countries, notes the energy company.
A total of 603 GWh was produced since the start of December. Demand in Latvia was 593 Gwh. Lithuania imported 68% and Estonia imported 10% of energy this month.
This situation on the Baltic energy market indicates an acute need for new energy production sources in Baltic states, notes JSC Latvenergo.
Last week several NordPool countries experienced some of historically the highest weekly electricity prices: 292.54 EUR/MWh in Germany, 345.34 EUR/MWh in France, Belgium, Netherlands and elsewhere. In Sweden’s SE4 trad region the price was 253.68 EUR/MWh. In Finland it was 233.03 EUR/MWh, which is the second highest average weekly price in the country. Last week the electricity price in Latvia increased 57% and was 247.50 EUR/MWh.
In Estonia the electricity price was 233.47 EUR/MWh, which is an increase of 57% when compared to a week prior. In Lithuania the price was 49% higher than the week prior – 253.73 EUR/MWh.
«If we look at technological costs and progression towards climate neutrality, it becomes clear high power wind farms are one of the best solutions,» says JSC Latvenergo board member Kaspars Cikmačs.
The expert notes that currently Baltic States have insufficient electricity production output – Lithuania relies on imports and Estonia relies on oil shale.
This puts Baltic States in energy deficit. Often energy production deficit is observed in Denmark, Finland and Germany, which is something that is painfully apparent on the market now.
Latvia was basically the only country that managed to provide electricity to satisfy in the last week of the year. The country also exported energy not only to other Baltic States but also Nordic countries, notes the expert.
Demand in Latvia was 593 MWh in December, whereas the energy volume produced was 603 MWh, which is 2% more. This means the electrical energy produced by JSC Latvenergo’s thermal power stations and hydro power stations was competitive and provided safe supply opportunities in a situation of emergency prices and demand.
«This is yet another time when we should stress the importance of thermal power plants for Latvia’s energy system – a time when other countries procure electrical energy to satisfy their domestic energy demand, excluding exports. Our export capabilities depend on diversity of outputs – approximately 10 Gwh of energy was produced from different renewable energy resources and CHP plants, approximately 30 Gwh was produced by Latvenergo TEC energy blocs and Daugava hydro electric power plant several days in a row in the middle of December. The start of this output can be traced as far back as the construction of Ķegums hydro electric power plant, when the state energy company had to take out a guarantee for demand that seems 10 times below what we have now. This number is a signal that Latvia and Baltic States in general should develop new power outputs. Latvenergo sees the need to speed up the plans for the construction of a new air turbine park with power output of at least 800 MW,» says Cikmačs.
Demand on the electricity market when compared to power availability shows that wind and sun energy output needs to be increased in order to ensure consumption of renewable energy resources, especially on the wholesale market, where gas turbines and hydro electric power plants can help balance out surplus and deficit.
This will help satisfy not only domestic consumption, but also the highly demanded green energy export.
Cikmačs notes: «For a modern and energy independent country development of renewable energy resources is a logical choice – further development of hydro electric power plants, new high-power wind turbine parks, sun energy for personal consumption and more rapid development of climate neutrality solutions to balance power output. Aside from that it is necessary to research sustainable and climate neutral energy storage technology to ensure energy availability in situations when wind, sun and hydro energy is not available.»