Energy alternatives for Lithuania discussed

  • 2013-04-24
  • From wire reports

VILNIUS - At a sitting of the Lithuanian government’s Strategic Committee on Monday, a working group formed by the government introduced proposals on the cost-efficient and consumer-friendly supply of electricity and other energy resources to the country, reports ELTA. The on-going power bridge projects (LitPol Link and NordBalt) and Lithuania’s participation in the Nordic electricity exchange Nord Pool Spot will strengthen Lithuania’s energy security in the electricity sector; however, sustainable development of Lithuania’s energy sector and Lithuania’s reduced dependence on energy imports call for competitive electricity generation capacities.

In view of information and analysis submitted by institutions and experts at the sittings of the working group, it should also be concluded that the current Visaginas NPP project, under the conditions listed therein, would be unaffordable for Lithuania, and its continuity will only be possible provided additional conditions are met.

“The scenario of electricity supply that would be the most cost-efficient and consumer-friendly was identified as a sustainable provision from the development of renewable energy sources, the CHP energy [cogeneration] development through the use of local energy sources, electricity production from diversified gas supply sources and the nuclear energy development. However, I would like to point out that the Visaginas NPP project continuity will only be possible provided the major commercial project indicators are improved upon and additional conditions are met,” Prime Minister Algirdas Butkevicius said.

According to the findings regarding the most cost-efficient supply of electricity, submitted by the working group, the project can be continued only provided the participation of regional partners in the Visaginas NPP project is legitimized through the contractual form, the distribution of expenses and responsibilities pertaining to the project implementation is ensured; maximum financing of the project with the minimum costs from international financial institutions and export credit agencies is ensured by the strategic investor and regional partners.

“Today we will inform our regional partners of the decision made. More detailed discussions regarding potential conditions and decisions whether or not to continue the Visaginas NPP project will be held after Latvia and Estonia familiarize themselves with detailed calculations of electricity supply,” the PM said.

In other words, the current Visaginas nuclear power plant project, according to the experts, cannot be implemented because the electricity price it offers would be too high, and not competitive, highlighted Prime Minister Butkevicius.
After a sitting of the Political Council, the prime minister reiterated that Lithuania remains a nuclear energy country, although the old NPP in Ignalina is being decommissioned. “We cannot say anything different before we really decommission it,” Butkevicius said.

The PM says that the Visaginas project was evaluated by a working group and a conclusion was made that the electricity produced at the plant would be too expensive. “Therefore, we suggest for our regional partners and Hitachi to look at our proposals and find another solution,” he said.

Butkevicius did not specify what could improve the project funding conditions. Regional partners, he said, should analyze what can be done in order to change the project. “This kind of project that was submitted cannot be implemented because of the conclusions made by experts,” the PM said.