Large majority, i.e. 75 percent, of Lithuanian residents support the aim to produce 80 percent of the country’s electricity and heat demands from renewable energy sources, as is formulated in the Draft National Energy Strategy. The results of the survey also demonstrate that 40 percent of them would agree to pay a little more for energy in order to ensure that more power is generated from renewable sources.
Ambitious support and proposals
The published results of the survey demonstrate that as much as three quarters of residents support the aim to produce 80 percent of the country’s electricity and heat demands from renewable energy sources. The analysis shows that 47 percent of the respondents fully support the aim formulated in the draft strategy, while 27 percent agree that the goal could be even more ambitious.
“Over the years, we have been witnessing consistent support from the public towards the field of renewable energy. Their support in this area is particularly important as the deliberations of the Draft National Energy Strategy is already taking place in Seimas. According to our estimates, the aims outlined in this document are not only feasible, but are also economically desirable. Lithuania, just like the other Baltic States, has sufficient technological and natural capacities at its disposal to ensure that renewable energy could account for 100 percent of the country’s energy production,” said Aistis Radavičius, Director of the Lithuanian Wind Power Association.
According to Radavičius, a considerable impact on energy production from renewable sources will be exerted by local developments in the wind energy sector. Currently, the total installed capacity of wind turbines is 521 MW, which generate more than a tenth of the total annual energy demand of the country. The document proposes achieving a 770 MW installed capacity of wind energy by 2020. This means that electricity production from wind energy would account for 20 percent of the country’s energy demand in 2020, or in other words the demand of more than 2 million residents.
4 out of 10 residents are ready to pay more for electricity
The results of the public survey demonstrate that some residents are likely to pay more for their energy consumption, in order to support the development of renewable energy in the country. 4 out of 10 Lithuanians would agree to a 2 percent or 0.2 ct/kWh increase in the energy price, if by using these funds, more energy would be produced from renewable sources. However, an equally large group, i.e. 38 percent, do not share this attitude.
“We have noticed that the residents who would agree to pay more for green energy are also the ones who support the development of renewable energy in Lithuania. The National Energy Strategy outlines a goal to increase electricity generation capacities within the country and gradually reduce imports of energy from other countries. At present, wind is alredy the cheapest source of energy production; thus, development of the wind energy is not only trendy, but is also rational,” stated Radavičius.
The representative survey was conducted by the OMD communications agency at the request of the Lithuanian Wind Power Association. The survey comprised online interviews of 1,068 internet users aged 18-69.