Energy idependence and supply security
1. Interim report: Analysis of current situation
Energy independence, supply security and energy safety are inextricably linked, with the common aim of ensuring the necessary amount of energy at any given time for all consumers in Estonia, whether it be in the form of heat, electricity or fuel. The effect of climate factors on energy independence and supply security is low due to the fact that electricity and heat production is mostly based on local fuels, and there is enough national power production and foreign connections in order to ensure smooth cover of domestic electricity consumption. Only in terms of natural gas and automotive fuels we depend entirely on imports.
Climate factors such as strong winds, rainfall, ambient air temperature, ice formation in winter, storms, lightning and other weather factors can affect the electricity supply and its security every day and every moment. In terms of energy supply and security of the electricity provision, the most vulnerable sector is the electricity transmission network, particularly to weather events such as large storm winds. Most of the electricity transmission takes place via overhead lines which are located in open fields and pass the forest areas, the reason why the wind felled trees on lines often cause power cuts. Power cuts affect significantly the availability of all critical vital services. The main measures being implemented today in order to ensure energy independence, energy security and safety, is the diversification of fuels and fuel suppliers, construction of new foreign connections, proper maintenance provision in case of trees fallen on power lines and replacement of overhead lines with underground lines.
2. Interim report: Climate change impact assessment (including analysis of possible risks and vulnerability)
Energy security, security of supply and energy reliability are not vulnerable to the expected climate change up to 2100. Energy security and security of supply depend foremost on availability of domestic energy ressources and on sufficiency of energy production capacities US EPA lists major risks of climate change related to the change of demand patterns (in winter demand reduces due to the increase of average temperature and in supper demand is increasing due to higher energy demand for cooling). One of the major risks determined is water scarsity both for cooling the power plants and for mining and production of the fuels. Global sea-level rise is also considered as major climate change threat as most of global fuels are supplied using sea transport. None of above listed risks are occuring in Estonia in the magnitude and direction to have any impact to Estonian energy security, security of supply and energy reliability. From the climate risks foreseen untill 2100 is increased number of extreme weather events which can cause power cuts and disturbances of electricity distribution system.