The green energy production of Utilitas energy group increased by almost 60 per cent in the second quarter
‘Utilitas prioritises increasing the share of renewable fuels and achieving the highest possible efficiency with the aim of environment protection. Thus, we are increasingly using local and renewable fuels in energy generation – mainly forestry and wood industry waste,’ said Priit Koit, Head of Utilitas Group. In the second quarter of this year, the group generated 372,010 MWh of energy, including 193,008 MWh of green heat and 51,943 MWh of electricity.
‘One of the central ideas of the Estonian Presidency of the Council of the EU is that a balance between the economic growth of Europe and protection of the natural environment is not only possible, but unavoidable,’ Koit highlighted. The European Union has set the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40 per cent by 2030. ‘Utilitas is moving in the same direction – we have avoided generating almost 271,600 tons of CO2 emissions in just six months. This is how much carbon dioxide would be generated in the case of producing the same amount of energy from gas and oil shale,’ he explained.
One of the measures recommended by the European Union to achieve the desired goal is increasing the share of district heating in energy generation, as renewable energy-based district heating is an environment-friendly option for supplying heat to cities. Koit believes that Estonia is as much a leader in this area as the Nordic countries. In the beginning of June, the combined heat and power stations of Utilitas were visited by representatives of local municipality governments of the Member States within the framework of an environmental seminar of the EU Committee of the Regions. Utilitas was happy to share their experience in the development of district heating and taking renewable energy sources into use, he said.
In the past few years, Utilitas has made extensive investments into the construction of a new combined heat and power plant, maintenance of thermal energy networks, and increasing the share of environment-friendly practices. This summer, among other things, there are works ongoing at the Haapsalu boiler plant which will be equipped with a flue gas condenser – a device which is used at the Utilitas boiler plants in Valga and Keila and the Utilitas combined heat and power stations in the vicinity of Tallinn. The technology is used to cool the flue gas led to the chimney and the generated heat is led to the district heating network. This new technology will increase the share of renewable fuels and reduce the emission of CO2 to the living environment.
Title of the photograph: Representatives of the Member States of the EU Committee of the Regions visiting the combined heat and power station of Utilitas.