New power grid on Estonia's Saaremaa island would require inclusion of 500 land owners

  • 2022-07-18
  • BNS/TBT Staff

TALLINN - Close to 500 land owners on Estonia's large western island of Saaremaa would have to be included in the establishment of a 330 kV main electricity grid, the construction of which has been requested by local enterprises, which is why the island's rural municipality wants to see a national designated spacial plan established for the project.

Deputy municipality elder of Saaremaa island Mikk Tuisk said that the would-be restrictions would have to be compensated to at least some land owners, which would no longer be under the authority of the Saaremaa rural municipality.

"In addition, it is difficult to assess how many protests and requests for clarifications would be sent to the rural municipality government about the plan," Tuisk added.

Considering the estimated increase in workload and volume of procedures necessary for planning the 330 kV main grid, it is not realistic that the municipality government should be able to plan the grid through general planning procedure in the presumed time frame. Thus, the rural municipality government supports the establishment of a national designated spatial plan for building the network on Saaremaa.

Estonian energy company Saare Wind Energy submitted an application to the Ministry of Finance in October 2021 for the establishment of a national designated spatial plan. Said plan would also include the establishment of the 330 kV main grid in Saaremaa and proposes to designate an area spanning from the western coast of Saaremaa to the Lihula substation as the planning area.

In its application, Saare Wind Energy OU points out that according to an optimistic assessment, the handling of such a national designated spatial plan would take the state close to three years.