Power co approves plans to build shale oil plant

The supervisory board of Estonia’s national power company Eesti Energia approved on Thursday plans to build a shale oil plant using a new, more efficient technology and organize a tender for the construction of up to two new oil shale-fired electricity generation units.

CEO Sandor Liive said the decision to build the complex consisting of the shale oil plant and up to two new generating units is crucial for the future of the Estonian oil shale industry.

“Building a new shale oil plant is Eesti Energia’s next step towards creating a high-quality liquid fuels industry in Estonia and a prerequisite for offering our technologies in other parts of the world,” Liive said.

The planned refinery will use the more environment-friendly, reliable and higher-capacity Enefit technology developed jointly by Eesti Energia and the international engineering company Outotec.

The plant will consume 2.26 million tons of oil shale annually, producing 290,000 tons of shale oil and 75 million cubic meters of carbonization gas used in electric power generation. In addition, a 35-megawatt steam turbine will be integrated into the complex using residual heat of the refining process to produce electricity.

The construction of the unit will start this year and it is to start running in 2011.

The cost of the facility is estimated at close to three billion kroons (EUR 192 mln). The cost of new generating units will become clear along with the outcome of the tenders by the end of 2010 when the final investment decision will be made.

Source: Estonian Investment and Trade Agency

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