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Energy Minister Vaičiūnas: from 2025 the Baltic region will need new reliable power plants
2017-06-02

Energy Minister Vaičiūnas: from 2025 the Baltic region will need new reliable power plants

The long-term power system adequacy analysis of the Baltic countries, which has been carried out for the first time by the electricity transmission system operators of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia, has shown that the existing double-circuit Lithuanian-Polish power interconnection is sufficient for the synchronisation of Baltic power systems. According to the analysis, new reliable and flexibly operating power plants should be built in the Baltic region in eight years to ensure the smooth operation of power systems and the security of power supply. 
 
The Lithuanian Minister of Energy Žygimantas Vaičiūnas says that energy issues should be regarded from the regional perspective, by assessing the possibilities of the region to be supplied with electric energy as well as the ability to ensure the security of the power system. The long-term analysis of the three Baltic countries is an important step toward the security of the Baltic power system and its readiness to ensure power supply in critical situations. The next stage will involve making a decision on additional regional power generation capacities. 
 
“The assessment of the adequacy of the Baltic power system in the next 15 years showed that the Baltic power system, prior to its synchronisation with the networks of continental Europe, is fully prepared to meet power demand in the region and provide system services. But many inefficient and uncompetitive power plants in the Baltic countries will be closed during this period and we must agree and decide at the regional level on new reliable, flexible and efficient power generation sources. We are faced with two alternatives – either to build these sources on a market basis or through state subsidies. The current situation on the market is not encouraging the development of new generation sources, while making a decision on subsidisation is always complicated, therefore, we must prepare for serious discussions,” said Minister of Energy Vaičiūnas. 
 
The power system adequacy analysis of the Baltic countries considered all information about new and dismantled power generation facilities and their technical capacities to provide system services. Based on the available data it is evident that new power generation sources to be built in the Baltic countries by 2032 will have a total capacity of just 272 MW, compared with a total capacity of 2 315 MW of power plants scheduled for closure by this time.
 
“From 2025, at any moment our power system will have to be prepared to operate in an isolated mode at the new qualitative level,” pointed out Litgrid’s CEO Daivis Virbickas. “Beyond 2025, the demand of the Baltic power system reserve will increase from 700 MW to 2 000 MW. In cold winter snaps we may face an electricity shortage of 200 MW, which could be reversed by an easily accessible and reliable power source,” said Virbickas.
 
The power system adequacy analysis for 2032 was carried out by the Baltic electricity transmission system operators Litgrid, AST and Elering. The adequacy of the Baltic power system was analysed according to five scenarios of the operation of the Baltic power system: continuing operation as part of the IPS/UPS system, operation in an isolated mode, operation in synchronisation with the power system of the Nordic countries, operation in synchronisation with the network of continental Europe through the exciting LitPol Link interconnection, and operation in synchronisation with the network of continental Europe through two LitPol link interconnections.
 
 
 
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