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About 60 percent of total electricity consumption will be imported this winter season
2014-11-13

About 60 percent of total electricity consumption will be imported this winter season

With the winter season approaching the Lithuanian electricity transmission system operator Litgrid presented system adequacy analysis.  The analysis shows that Lithuania's electricity system will be able to meet the country's electricity needs even under severe conditions of weather, emergencies or other circumstances. Up to 62 percent of the consumed electricity may be imported from the neighbouring countries this winter season.
 
"The adequacy analysis shows that Lithuania's electricity system is capable of ensuring the supply of electricity under normal winter conditions in 2015.  Although the capacity of the power transmission grid is sufficient to import even more than 60 percent of the country’s electricity demand, the electricity generated at local thermal power plants which supply the cities with heat in winter will also be consumed, “said Daivis Virbickas, CEO and Chairman of the Board of Litgrid.
 
According to Litgrid's estimation, the biggest demand of electricity in winter will total to 1800 MW in the fourth week in January. The total installed capacity of Lithuania's power plants is 4300 MW. However, this potential is not fully used by the market as most Lithuanian power plants burn fossil fuel, such as gas and fuel oil, meaning that the electricity generated by these plants is much pricier than imported electricity.  Nevertheless, these power plants play an important role in ensuring reserve capacities.
 
The adequacy analysis is prepared every year for winter and summer seasons.  The analysis evaluates possible risk scenarios with the purpose of assessing the reliability of the country's electricity system and its readiness to cope with emergencies. This year's analysis has taken into account not only the possibility of emergencies inside the country but also considered the possibility of gas supplies interruptions.
 
"We have analysed the consequences of possible unexpected cut-offs of gas and electricity supplies. These critical scenarios are, of course, theoretical and evaluate situations, which can hardly occur in reality. However, we must always be ready for such cases," suggested Virbickas.
 
According to Litgrid's CEO, the cut-off of electricity supplies from Russia could only be possible by physically disconnecting power lines, which is highly unlikely to happen. It would be easier to imagine a sharp decrease in the supply of electricity on the power exchange, which would end up in considerable increase of market price of electricity. In case of, for example, the cut-off of gas supply, the electricity demand will be met by power plants burning fuel oil.  
 
Lithuania relies on imports to meet 60-63 percent of its annual electricity demand. The Lithuanian energy system is linked with Latvia, Belarus and Russia via cross-border connections.  The adequacy of the Lithuanian energy system is expected to further improve after new power interconnectors to Sweden and Poland are put in operation since 1 January 2016. 
 
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