Estonia and Latvia plan to jointly develop an offshore wind farm

Stenbock House, 30 July 2020 – Today, the government supported the signing of a memorandum of understanding between Estonia and Latvia by Minister of Economic Affairs and Infrastructure Taavi Aas, with which the two countries plan to develop a joint wind farm in the Gulf of Riga.

According to Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, in order to meet the renewable energy target set for 2030, investments must be made in various renewable energy sources, and offshore wind energy has a growing and increasingly important role to play. “The offshore wind farm area developed jointly by Estonia and Latvia is a unique project that contributes to the achievement of the countries’ renewable energy goals and creates new opportunities for other offshore farm developments,” he said.

According to Taavi Aas, it is important to build the wind farm together, because it provides an opportunity to apply for support from the European Union for a cross-border project. “This, in turn, makes it cheaper to build other wind farms in the area, as other projects in the same area would also benefit from the grid infrastructure to be built for the farm,” said Aas.

The two countries will jointly carry out studies to determine the best location for the construction of an offshore wind farm between Estonia and Latvia in the sea, taking into account wind conditions, plans, existing projects, environmental protection, and all other factors. Once the necessary studies have been carried out and the permits have been obtained, an auction will be held for the offshore area with a building permit and the winner will be able to build an offshore wind farm there.

“An open competition ensures equal treatment of market participants, the lowest possible price of renewable energy for consumers, and the efficient use of our marine resources,” said Aas. “Additionally, a large offshore wind farm will contribute to the region’s security of electricity supply and help attract foreign investors.”

The capacity of the proposed offshore wind farm is up to 1,000 MW and the expected completion time is 2030. The wind farm would produce approximately 3.5 terawatt-hours of electricity per year, which is approximately 40 percent of Estonia’s annual electricity consumption.