The European Union
has announced plans for cutting off Baltic States from Russia
’s power grid so that the countries in the region can achieve energy independence in less than 10 years’ time.
EU’s Climate and Energy Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete said Thursday that Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia could link their electricity grids to the bloc through Poland by 2025.
“We have been working quite a lot to finalize a political agreement on the synchronization of the Baltic States’ electricity grids with the continental network,” Canete said, adding, “We have studied all the details to see what option was most cost-efficient and it is this that connects to the continental Europe
Reports over the past months have indicated that the EU and the Baltic States are nearing the conclusion of talks on the issue and will sign a deal later in June to politically endorse the plan.
Canete said if the deal is signed, the Baltic States would be ensured that they could have electricity through the grid and in full independence from Russia.
“With that MoU there will be agreed a commitment to ensure the full independence of the Baltic States in operating the electricity system through synchronization of the Baltic States with the European network by 2025,” he said.
The three countries in the Baltics are now part of the Integrated Power System (IPS) of Russia and Belarus. Russia has never cut power flows to the region or threatened to do so.
Estimates suggest that the synchronization plan for the Baltics in its initial stages could cost the EU at least 190 million euros (USD 213.14 million). That would mainly go to an additional interconnector between Poland and Lithuania.
Other options studied included a link via the Nordic countries or operation of the Baltic system as a self-standing region.