Renewable energy

We are one of Estonia's largest producers of renewable energy. We produce electricity from wind, water, biomass, and also municipal waste which we burn instead of dumping it in landfills. Using renewable sources of energy preserves Estonia's environment. We are also exploring methods of producing solar energy.

Wind energy production is environmentally sustainable

Eesti Energia has 44 wind turbines for electricity production and the total annual output of its wind farms is about 210 GWh of electricity. This is enough to supply nearly 85,000 homes with average electricity consumption during a year. The Aulepa wind park in Läänemaa County with a total capacity of 48 MW is one of the most powerful wind farms in the Baltic countries. Its 16 wind turbines produce about 80 GWh of electricity a year, which can cover the annual electricity needs of about 32,000 households. The unique wind farm in Ida-Virumaa County was built on the former ash field of the Balti power plant, so no forest or arable land was used for the park.

We also operate wind farms in Virtsu (Läänemaa County) and Paldiski (Harjumaa County). We are developing new mainland wind farm projects and exploring options for establishing an offshore wind farm in the Gulf of Riga.

Wind energy can be used within certain limitations. For example, only a certain number of wind turbines can be connected to the power grid. Because wind speeds vary, wind farms cannot guarantee a stable supply of power and it is important to have controllable power production capacities available.

Virtsu wind farm Aulepa wind farm Narva ash field wind farm Paldiski wind farm
Built 2002 2009 2012 2013
Wind turbines 2 16 17 9
Capacity 1,4 MW 48 MW 39 MW 22,5 MW
Annual output 3,6 GWh 80 GWh 71 GWh 52 GWh
Meets the annual electricity need of homes with an average consumption 1500 32 000 28 000 21 000
CO2 not emitted into the air compared to producing the same amount of electricity from oil shale at the Narva power plants 3400 t 75 000 t 67 000 t 49 000t

Solar energy production is increasing

The use of solar energy is picking up momentum around the world. The global capacity of solar panels has increased from 40 to 227 GW over the past five years. Solar energy is also becoming more affordable for consumers, which is why we are developing new solar parks and local solar energy based energy production solutions.

Developments

Tootsi wind farm

Eesti Energia plans to build a wind farm on the exhausted peat mine at Tootsi; it will consist of up to 52 wind turbines, of which 46 can be built in the first stage. This planned wind farm would be the largest and most modern in the Baltic countries and it would contribute significantly to renewable energy production in Estonia. The output from the Tootsi wind farm would cover the electricity needs of Pärnumaa County, for example.

Timeline

  • Studies and plannings 2011 - 2016
  • Construction 2017 - 2019
  • Ready for commission 2020

The development of a wind farm on the exhausted peat mine helps give new value to the unused area. Once the wind farm is ready, the historical peat production area will be accessible to visitors. The planning provides for additional ways of turning the Tootsi bog into a tourist site that introduces the peat industry and briquette production and containing recreational and observation areas.

Ruhnu full service solution

Eesti Energia is exploring ways of establishing modern solar electricity production with a capacity of 300 kW on the island of Ruhnu. The facility, which is independent of the power grid, would cover the island's electricity needs and, along with batteries and diesel generators, ensure stable power supply for the inhabitants of the island.

Timeline

  • Studies and plannings 2015 - 2017
  • Construction 2017
  • Ready for commission 2017

Biofuel – energy from local renewable material

We use biofuel for electricity and heat production in the Narva power plants, the Paide Pogi CHP plant and the Valka CHP plant in Latvia.

The biomass we use consists of low-grade timber or brush that is unsuitable for the wood and paper industries. Estonia has large biomass reserves. The environmental sustainability of using biomass and the large size of local reserves makes biomass an important renewable energy resource for Estonia.

With its existing production assets, Eesti Energia can produce about 2.5 TWh of renewable electricity from biomass per year. This is about a third of Estonia's annual electricity consumption.

Hydropower is environment-friendly, but it is limited

Although Estonia has no natural conditions for large-scale hydropower production, it is reasonable to use the available resources. Producing electricity from water is environmentally friendly, as no greenhouse gases are emitted into the air. Water is a local source of energy with limited capacity. The theoretical resource is up to 30 MW, of which 10 MW is feasibly usable.

We produce hydropower at the Linnamäe and Keila-Joa hydroelectric plants. Their combined capacity is 1.5 MW and their output can cover the annual electricity needs of about 4,000 households.

Waste is energy

The Iru waste-to-energy power unit can produce heat and electricity from up to 250,000 tonnes of mixed municipal waste a year. The large-scale dumping of mixed municipal waste in landfills has ended largely owing to the Iru power plant. After sorting domestic waste, nearly 300,000 tonnes of mixed municipal waste remains in Estonia every year. The calorific value of such waste is equivalent to that of oil shale and wood chips. The Iru waste-to-energy unit produces up to 310 000 MWh of heat and up to 134 000 MWh of electricity in a year, which roughly corresponds to the electricity consumption of the town of Paide and surrounding villages.

We care about the environment

Read more »

Choose Green Energy!

Read more »