Estonia: Eesti Energia to stop producing electricity from oil shale by 2030

  • 2021-06-02
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN – State-owned Estonian energy group Eesti Energia announced on Wednesday that it will discontinue producing electricity from oil shale by 2030 and will focus on developing offshore wind farms, energy storage systems and producing oil from waste based on the principles of circular economy in the future.

Eesti Energia CEO Hando Sutter said at a presentation on Wednesday that the group plans to achieve carbon neutrality by 2045. 

While the production of electricity from oil shale will end by 2025, the use of retort gas generated in the process of the production of shale oil for the production of electricity will continue until 2030, the CEO said. 

The group also plans to transform Enefit Power into a chemical industry company that will produce raw materials for the chemical industry from used tires, plastic and shale oil.

Under current plans, oil plants of the older generation in East-Viru County will continue to operate until 2040, but other petroleum products such as old tires and plastics will start to be blended into oil shale in the production of shale oil.

At the newer oil plants, oil shale will be completely replaced by plastic waste in the future and the plants will produce waste plastic oil, which will be used to produce raw materials for the chemical industry. 

In the production of electricity, Eesti Energia will focus in the future on solar farms, onshore wind farms and, above all, offshore wind farms, as the latter have the highest efficiency. Sutter expressed hope that the wind farm in the Gulf of Riga could be operational before 2030. 

The group plans to cover 90 percent of Estonia's total energy needs by means of energy produced from renewable sources within 10 years.