Stopgap solution developed by Elering to keep Balticconnector in operation during maintenance work in Latvia
Elering has analysed and tested an extraordinary solution for ensuring the operation of the Estonia-Finland gas connection in a situation where the gas flow from Latvia to Estonia is interrupted due to maintenance work on the pipeline in Latvia.
The Latvian gas transmission system operator Conexus Baltic Grid will interrupt the flow of gas to Estonia via Karksi metering station due to maintenance work in Latvia from 1 May to 1 June.
“Last week it appeared that the use of Balticconnector would be cut off completely for the whole month, but now Elering’s calculations and practical testing show capacity to continue operation of the Estonia-Finland gas connection in May as well,” said chairman of the Elering management board, Taavi Veskimägi. “We will try in any case to avoid a situation where the recently launched common Estonian-Latvian-Finnish gas market splits into separate parts,“ he added.
The alternative solution developed by Elering for ensuring Balticconnector’s operation is based on the use of the Värska-Rakvere-Kiili-Paldiski pipeline, which will allow the use of Balticconnector to be continued in a limited capacity in May during the maintenance work in Latvia, both in the Estonia-Finland and, if necessary, in the Finland-Estonia direction. The transmission capacity of Balticconnector depends during this period on the market participants’ desire to use the Värska entry point for importing gas into Estonia and Estonian domestic gas consumption.
Elering and the Finnish gas system operator Gasgrid Finland will continue detailed coordination of the transmission capacities to determine the final capacities. The TSOs will notify the market immediately via Urgent Market Messaging if the implementation of the technical solution should cause any other changes affecting the market.
The flow of as from Latvia via Estonia to Finland in the common Estonia-Latvia-Finland gas market launched this year currently enters Estonia via Karksi and moves toward Finland by way of the Karksi-Kiili-Paldiski pipeline. In the first three months of the year, a total of close to 2,600 gigawatt-hours of gas has flowed from Estonia to Finland.