The Estonian Environmental Investment Centre (EIC) published today the ELWIND Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) Programme public procurement. With ELWIND the state conducts all the necessary studies prior to auctioning out the offshore area.
Tõnn Tuvikene, ELWIND project manager points out that the purpose of the ELWIND project, conducting the pre-development activities, is to create enabling conditions for affordable renewable energy to enter our region from which the local communities and the Estonian and Latvian consumers would gain. “To this end the state is conducting thorough studies on how an offshore wind park in Estonia would impact the environment, the social-economic situation, the biodiversity, the sea bottom, the visual horizon and so on. Shall the studies prove that the area in question is suitable for building an offshore wind park, the state will not build the park, but will auction out received superficies license. Thanks to thorough studies, the participating companies will have at hand very good information on which conditions an offshore wind park can be built in that area,” said Tuvikene.
The aim of the procurement is contracting a certified EIA lead expert and experienced team of specialists to assess the scope of the environmental impact studies needed regarding the activities in Estonia. The programme will describe the whole EIA process, i.a. the scope and methodology of the environmental studies in Estonia, community engagement and so on. EIC will be publishing the procurements for conducting the concrete studies throughout the year 2024.
“Similar models, where the state engages in doing the pre-development works in the form of conducting area studies, are used also in other successful offshore wind states, such as Denmark, the Netherlands and Germany. Experience shows that this keeps the costs for the society lower and brings achieving the renewable energy targets closer. Our project concept is innovative, as next to establishing the offshore wind parks, the goal is to connect the Estonian and Latvian electricity grids by an additional electric power transmission cable. This interconnector will help to stabilize the electricity prices and make them affordable to the consumer in the future,” added Tuvikene.
The studies will be conducted in the years 2024-2027, all the results will be published on ELWIND website. The project is co-funded through the EU Connecting Europe Facility, from which 18,8 million euros were allocated to finance the project related studies.
You will find the ELWIND Estonia and Latvia area map on the ELWIND website.
Link to the state public procurement registry (in Estonian) – ELWIND Estonian area EIA programme procurement.
The Environmental Bureau of Latvia has already completed compiling the EIA programme in Latvia.