Estonia and Latvia are in discussions to jointly develop an offshore wind mega-project of 1GW in the Baltic Sea, according to Estonian news agency ERR.
The Liivi Bay project in the Gulf of Riga, which would be developed by Estonia's Eesti Energia, would present the two small Baltic nations with a means of spreading the high cost of building an offshore wind farm and reduce financial risk.
“It is extremely important for the Baltic region to work together as a strong union, and I am very pleased that we have finally succeeded in reaching active co-operation between Latvia and Estonia in developing a common renewable energy source,” Latvian economics minister Ralfs Nemiro told ERR after meeting with Estonian minister of economic affairs and infrastructure, Taavi Aas.
Since 2009, Estonian state-owned utility Eesti Energia has been studying the possibility of building the Liivi Bay offshore wind farm, located some 10 kilometres off the Estonian island of Kinhu.
“This project has the potential for international co-operation with our southern neighbour,” Eesti Energia spokesperson Priit Luts told Recharge, but added that the project still is at an early stage of development.
“It is impossible to talk in more detail” regarding a co-operation with Latvia, he said.
Eesti Energia has already carried out some studies on the Gulf of Riga project and could start an official permitting process once the government decides to initiate the land lease and planning process, Luts said.
“After that, we can start with the necessary research and environmental impact assessment.”
The Liivi Bay wind farm is seen by Estonia as an important step towards achieving 2050 climate neutrality, and could cover nearly half of the country's electricity consumption, according to Eesti Energia.