Finland is set for a stable electricity supply this winter, as confirmed by the Energy Authority's latest reports. Despite potential vulnerabilities in the energy system, the country appears well-equipped to handle peak consumption during cold winter days, thanks to increased production capacities and robust import connections.
Compared to the previous winter, Finland's electricity production capacity has improved significantly.
The Olkiluoto 3 nuclear power plant, contributing 1600 megawatts, started regular production in April 2023. Additionally, over 1300 megawatts of new wind power capacity have been added this year, with an expected increase of another 600 megawatts by year-end. However, some production capacities, such as CHP (Combined Heat and Power) electricity generation, have decreased by nearly 200 megawatts compared to last year.
On a cold winter day, the peak electricity demand is estimated to be around 14,300 MW. The domestic market-based production capacity available during these peak times is approximately 12,800 megawatts. To meet the demand, Finland will require about 1,500 megawatts of imported electricity, supported by transmission connections capable of importing up to 3,400 megawatts from neighboring countries.
The Energy Authority also highlighted the role of the Inkoo LNG terminal in securing natural gas supply, especially after the Balticconnector gas pipeline between Finland and Estonia experienced a leak in October 2023. With repair works expected to last until at least April 2024, Finland will not receive pipeline gas this winter. Instead, liquefied natural gas (LNG) will be received at the floating LNG terminal in Inkoo, as well as in Hamina, Tornio, and Pori. Gas from the Inkoo and Hamina terminals will be fed into the gas network.
Despite the Balticconnector being out of operation, the gas supply in Finland is anticipated to be sufficient for the winter. The Inkoo LNG terminal's regasification capacity of 140 GWh/d alone can secure gas deliveries. However, a potential disruption at the Inkoo terminal could jeopardize gas availability, which may also impact electricity production.
Overall, the country's proactive measures in enhancing its electricity production and import capacities, along with alternative arrangements for natural gas supply, position Finland favorably to navigate the winter months without major energy shortages.