Last year, wind parks operating in Lithuania produced the largest amount of electricity in the country’s wind energy history. The result surpassed the record achieved in 2017, when the production volumes amounted to over 1.3 TWh.
According to the Lithuanian Energy Resources Exchange Baltpool, in December the country’s wind parks generated 169.4 GWh of electricity. The overall result for 2019, according to Litgrid, the transmission system operator, was 1.453 TWh, almost 28 percent higher than in 2018, when just over 1.139 TWh was generated. Production volumes in major power plants increased by more than a quarter and in small ones by more than 40 percent.
“Last year was extremely successful for wind parks operating in Lithuania. As we predicted, the amount of electricity produced surpassed both 2018 and even 2017 results. The new record was significantly influenced by the extremely windy weather in the first and last quarters of the year, as well as by the steadily increasing technical reliability of wind turbines. For example, in March, production reached about 173 GWh, which was the highest monthly figure ever,” says Aistis Radavičius, Director of the Lithuanian Wind Power Association.
According to the Statistics Department there are 1.322 million households in Lithuania and they consume almost 3 TWh of electricity per year. This means that wind parks generate about half of electricity consumed in Lithuanian households or meet the needs of 1.3 million people.
As Radavičius observes, taking into account the development of wind energy technologies and the ambitious goals set in the Lithuanian National Energy Independence Strategy, the volume of electricity generated by wind parks will continue to grow. The first technology-neutral auction for developers of renewable energy projects at the end of 2019, which was won by the company developing the wind parks, showed that wind energy is currently the most competitive energy source. This trend is confirmed by other developers who decided to build entirely subsidy free wind parks in coming years. A new wind farm construction boom is expected in 2021-2023.
There are currently 23 wind parks in Lithuania, with a combined capacity of 480 MW. Together with small wind turbines, the total installed capacity is 533 MW. Preliminary estimations from the association show that last year wind parks were able to generate about 13 percent of the country’s final electricity consumption. In comparison: all renewable sources combined generated 26 percent of electricity.