On 22 February 2024, Lääne-Harju rural municipality and Energiasalv signed an agreement of joint intentions in Paldiski, which confirmed further cooperation in connection with the construction of pumped-hydro energy storage to be built in Paldiski.


According to Peep Siitam, the CEO and founder of Energiasalv, the development of the Paldiski pumped-hydro energy storage (PHS) facility has reached the stage of construction procurement and financing, which will commence construction work in 2025.


During the construction of the Paldiski PHS and water intake facility, urban space will be provided with access to the sea. The concept foresees the construction of a small port at the site of the Paldiski PHS water intake facilities at S. Julajevi tee 4.


Lääne-Harju rural municipality has set itself the goal to completely transition to renewable energy and develop a high-quality living environment with modern infrastructure services. The signed agreement emphasises that cooperation between the local government and the business sector is mutually beneficial and helps to create sustainable solutions for the future that promote the well-being of the region.


“As a local government, we pay more and more attention to taking advantage of unused opportunities for the benefit of the business and living environment, that is, to think in terms of the circular economy,” said Jaanus Saat, Lääne-Harju rural municipality mayor.


“The water intake facilities accompanying the small port unlocks the long-awaited opportunity for locals to have access to the sea again, and it is also good news for local fishermen and rescuers. The small port here is also welcomed by all the small craft owners who can visit us from the sea,” he added.


According to Jaanus Saat, they plan to analyse the integration of the underground reservoirs of the Paldiski pumped-hydro energy storage facility, and the thermal energy contained in it into the city’s district heating system. “We employ the same way of thinking for other developments throughout the rural municipality,” he added.


The CEO and founder of Energiasalv, Peep Siitam, emphasised that the benefits of the Paldiski PHS for Estonians lie in reducing energy prices and in several socio-economic effects, for example, establishing access to the sea for the residents of the region.


“Energiasalv’s Paldiski PHS is a unique project that primarily serves the interests of consumers. Besides ensuring security of supply and an environmentally friendly approach, ensuring a more affordable price for Estonian consumers is no less important,” said Peep Siitam, head of Energiasalv. “From the point of view of the region and Paldiski, there are also tangible socio-economic effects. In the case of the Paldiski PHS facility, we are talking about the construction of both aboveground and underground basic infrastructure, which can be used more cost-effectively than alternatives to promote several other businesses. The Paldiski PHS should therefore be considered an initial investment in increasing the wealth of the region.”


According to Siitam, the construction of the small port is the first step in this concept. “Since the water intake facilities have to be built one way or another, why not do it in such a way that the local community gets the long-awaited access to the sea through a port where vessels are provided with berths and water supply and Paldiski is accessible by sea,” he said.


Energiasalv utilises its innovative Zero Terrain technology for Estonia, enabling the implementation of classical pumped hydro energy storage projects in flat regions without mountains or large rivers, thereby setting a new standard for efficient and sustainable energy storage through the utilisation of favourable geology and surface water bodies as upper reservoirs.


Energiasalv’s Paldiski PHS plant is vital in helping the Estonian energy system manage the unpredictable fluctuations of renewable energy. Paldiski 500MW 6GWh PHS will provide customers with clean, secure, and affordable power when no wind or solar energy is available.


With a storage capacity of 6GWh during a 12-hour storage cycle, the project aims to provide affordable electricity to consumers during low wind or solar power availability periods. This production level is equivalent to Estonian households’ average daily electricity consumption.


The modular design of the Paldiski PHS allows for higher storage capacity at a lower cost than any existing alternative, which is why it is planned to increase the storage capacity of Paldiski PHS from the current 12 hours to at least 30 hours.


About Energiasalv


Energiasalv’s Zero Terrain Paldiski is an EU Project of Common Interest (PCI project). As a strategic infrastructure project, its preparation has been supported by the Connecting Europe Facility – managed by the European Climate, Infrastructure and Environment Executive Agency (CINEA). Energiasalv is owned by the Estonian energy company AS Alexela, Baltic-Polish renewable energy company Sunly AS, Vool OÜ, Combiwood Grupp OÜ, Warmeston OÜ, and Ronnivara OÜ.

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