Estonian system operator: We are ready to synchronize Baltics with continental Europe

  • 2022-09-23
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN – Estonian electricity and gas system operator Elering announced on Friday that together with other Baltic electricity system operators, it is ready to synchronize the Baltic countries with the electricity system of continental Europe, if necessary.

The risk that Russia will decouple Estonia and the two other Baltic countries from its electricity system has been higher than usual since February, when Russia attacked Ukraine, the system operator said, adding that it, as well as the system operators in neighboring countries, are prepared and ready.

There is nothing specific or extraordinary in the operation of the power system, Elering said.

Elering CEO Taavi Veskimagi said the Baltic countries have been preparing to leave the Russian/Belarusian electricity system for years.

"Should it happen, however, that Russia disconnects us from its electricity system earlier, we are now ready to quickly synchronize with the continental European frequency area in such a way that the change is not noticed by the electricity consumer. To this end, we are working with neighboring countries as well as local electricity producers to ensure a smooth transition from one electricity system to another," the CEO said.

Officially, it is planned to join the continental European electricity system in 2025, and, according to Elering, every day closer to that date we are ready for the synchronization with lower and lower risks and costs. Since February, however, Elering has taken significant extra steps to mitigate the risks also in the event of an emergency disconnection from the Russian system. As a result, the risk of blackouts in such a situation is low, the company says.

Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas said in an address to the public on Thursday evening that Estonia must be prepared for Russia disconnecting Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania from its electricity grid.

"Although Estonia has been preparing for emergency desynchronization from the Russian electricity system for years, there may still be temporary problems with the supply of electricity. It would be wise to be prepared for possible power outages -- that includes public authorities, companies, and every individual. I encourage you to think about how to deal with a power outage," Kallas said.