WEC Lithuania unites the Lithuanian Electricity Association; Lithuanian District Heating Association; Lithuanian Nuclear Energetics Association; Lithuanian Biomass Energy Association LITBIOMA; Lithuanian Energy Consultants Association; The National Association of the Electrical Engineering Business (NETA); Lithuanian Hydropower Association; and the Lithuanian Electricity Producers’ association. WEC Lithuania seeks to unite forces to effectively manage and rationally develop a national energy sector – to supply energy with the most favorable conditions, without compromising future generations to meet national needs in this area, and to represent the interests of the Lithuanian energy sector in the world.
Energy in Lithuania
Comparing 2019 and 2020 results, Lithuania’s energy landscape remains fairly consistent, with Critical Uncertainties revolving around Russia, EU Cohesion as well as Digitalisation. Action Priorities continue to focus on Renewable Energies and LNG but lose Energy Efficiency as a key issue. Instead, Large Scale Accidents enter the Actions section with greater impact and lower uncertainty.
Russia retains its position as the leading Critical Uncertainty. Perspectives are influenced by Denmark’s approval for construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, an alternative route for the delivery of Russian gas to Europe. Lithuania has expressed opposition to the project because of concerns over the competitiveness of the gas market and security of supply in the region. There is additional concern over the impact of disconnecting from the IPS/UPS and synchronisation with Continental Europe. Also pending is the definition of trading terms and conditions with third countries after the inauguration of the Astravets nuclear power plant.
EU Cohesion continues to be seen with high impact and uncertainty. Lithuania’s strategic projects in the energy sector are highly dependent on EU support. These projects are i) synchronisation of the Baltic States electricity network with Continental Europe and ii) gas interconnection between Lithuania and Poland (GIPL).
Data AI also persists as a Critical Uncertainty. In April 2019, the Ministry of Economy and Innovation published the ‘Lithuanian Artificial Intelligence Strategy: A Vision of the Future’ report providing policy recommendations to modernize and expand the current AI ecosystem in Lithuania and ensure that the nation is ready for a future with AI. The report identified energy as a key economic sector that would benefit most from the adoption of artificial intelligence systems.
Renewable Energies are expected to constitute a major part of domestic energy production and total final energy consumption, reducing the dependence on fossil fuel imports and increasing local electricity generating capacities. Lithuania is one of the 11 EU members to have a renewables share greater than 20% of total production. The country is also among the few EU members to have already met its 2020 renewable targets. In addition to climate adaptation, a plan for energy independence by 2050 positions renewables as a crucial source of energy diversification and security.
LNG remains an Action Priority. Legislative amendments adopted in December 2018 paved the way for Lithuania to buy out the floating Klaipeda LNG terminal, “Independence”, or similar vessels by the end of 2024. It will also enable continued LNG imports until at least 2044. The first phase of the plan will be implemented in 2020. The LNG terminal operator in 2019 refinanced the lease of the FSRU currently in operation, spreading out the costs until 2044, thereby reducing the LNG terminal charge for consumers from 2020 onwards.
Large Scale Accidents become an Action Priority. This survey took place as Belarus prepared to launch its new nuclear power plant. As its neighbour Lithuania has serious reservation about the project’s safety and is waiting for the completion of a pending cross-border environmental impact assessment. The principal concern is that in an event of a large-scale accident, the Lithuanian capital, as well as a third of the country’s population, could face tragic consequences
One of the main tasks for Lithuania’s energy sector is to implement the Baltic electricity system’s synchronisation with continental Europe by 2025. Prior to this step, the country will have the task to develop its own electricity generation capacity. For this purpose, the Lithuanian Ministry of Energy plans to use a capacity market model. To inform the process, the Ministry is collecting information from companies intending to build electricity generation capacity in Lithuania.