«Nelja Energia foresaw such developments and is therefore considering open sea wind parks,» said Mr Kruus. «As in sea the costs will be much higher, one version is businesses acquiring additional radars for defence ministry. We have not decided about that yet, but are willing to discuss it.»
The restrictions desired by defence ministry were also discouraged derided by Estonian Association of Spatial Planners. «The association is of the opinion that the regulation at hand is in contradiction with provisions of national planning «Eesti 2030+»,» wrote CEO if the association Maie-Ly Rebas. «For larger wind parks on land, there are especially many options in former mining areas in Ida-Virumaa where the wind potential is satisfactory and there are fewer social controversies and nature conservation restrictions.»
The defence ministry takes the regulation to cabinet session on April 21st.
Andres Sõnajalg, CEO of Wind Technology Association (Tuuletehnoloogia Liit)
It is unthinkable, talking about defence ministry, to seek to block an entire branch of industry, thereby applying sudden brakes on Estonian economy and wind technology production with one of the greatest potentials of export. In Estonia, we are no longer only talking about erecting imported wind turbines but they are also produced here locally according to technology patented in over 150 countries. This means jobs, tax income, and resulting in economic and energy security. A functioning wind mill industry is especially vital for Ida-Virumaa where these very issues are the sharpest.
Herein, Aidu and Vaivara and other wind parks will have to be treated separately. The first – Aidu wind park with 30 turbines planned and also to be the first park based on Estonian’s own technology – is already in building stage and naturally we have all the needed coordination agreements.
With Aidu wind park alone, jobs will be several hundred. To coordinate the Aidu park, defence ministry set conditions which we were able to meet by compromises. Thus, the current discussions do not concern Aidu park, rather the Vaivara one. Also, to be precise: the ministry of defence has not banned that either but has set two alternatives: to substantially cut height of turbines, or install an additional radar with developer partially financing.
Lower turbines would substantially diminish effectiveness; with the other alternative, there is readiness by the developer to compromise and invest.
Let it be mentioned that by the national planning the state has undertook to install the extra radar itself; but, as I said, we are willing to compromise. For solutions with Vaivara, an analysis is underway in cooperation with defence industry enterprises to mitigate impact on defence capability.
Not clear at the moment if soundness of mind will prevail, but it would make sense to compile a competent work group where parties find optimal conjunction for defence and wind energy. The seeking of solutions cannot happen in two mutually exclusive regimes.