Energy from biomass
Efficient utilization of biomass resources is crucial due to their limited availability. It is imperative to employ high-efficiency solutions for generating energy from biomass, minimizing the waste of the primary energy contained in the fuel.
Domestic wood chips
Forests cover more than 50% of Estonia’s territory and are a local renewable resource that has always played an important role in the country’s economy. Leftovers and waste from the forestry sector are used for energy production, thus increasing the efficiency of using this valuable resource.
The role of biomass in the European climate neutrality plan
Sustainably managed forests
The use of wood obtained from sustainably managed forests, for example in the production of building materials, reduces the production from fossil sources and binds carbon in a specific wooden building material for a longer period of time than would be possible in nature.
Using wood waste
The use of low-value wood leftovers in the energy sector enables us to reduce the need to produce electricity from fossil sources. In the Estonian context, biomass mainly replaces oil shale in electricity production, as well as natural gas, oil shale, and fuel oil in heat production.
100% certified suppliers
The biomass used by Utilitas comes from certified suppliers (FSC/PEFC/SBP). All suppliers are required to provide evidence that their wood comes from locations where all forest protection requirements are followed, forest restoration measures are implemented, and that the wood is not from protected areas.
Use of biomass in Utilitas
We use wood chips made of timber and forest industry waste as fuel to produce heat and electricity in cogeneration and boiler plants.
Our cogeneration plants are connected to a district heating network and produce heat and electricity. We use the waste heat generated during electricity production for heating buildings and domestic water. It is the most efficient way to produce heat and electricity together, which ensures the maximum use of primary energy and significantly reduces emissions.
District heating boiler plants
In district heating networks, where the heat load is smaller, we use boiler plants for energy production. Thanks to modern technologies, the efficiency of such boiler plants is close to that of a cogeneration plant.
Benefits of cogeneration
In the cogeneration process, both heat and electricity are produced from local biomass. In addition, waste heat generated during production is also directed into the network.
Producing electricity as close to the point of consumption as possible reduces losses in electricity transmission networks and increases energy efficiency even more.
Due to the smaller amount of fuel used, cogeneration produces significantly less emissions. Using biomass also reduces the need to generate electricity from fossil fuels.
Cogeneration plants that operate at a base load play an important role in energy security – they provide electricity and heat even when there is no wind or sun.
Our cogeneration plants
Heat production in boiler plants
In district heating networks, where the heat load is smaller, we use boiler plants for energy production. We also use efficient boiler plants in Tallinn to cover peak demand.
Wood waste is the main fuel in all cities using the Utilitas district heating service.
We use flue gas scrubbers and other cleaning equipment in our boiler plants, which increase the efficiency of plants using renewable fuel.