Fiona Riddoch

The head of COGEN Europe, Europe’s main combined heat and power industry representative group has welcomed Latvia’s Presidency of the European Union.

Fiona Riddoch says it’s an ideal opportunity for the country to demonstrate its highly positive experience in improving efficiency across the whole energy supply chain at a time when energy security is high on the EU’s agenda.
Fiona Riddoch
“Latvia is an EU leader in terms of cogeneration deployment and support, and can bring its national experience to the security of supply debate, where the challenge of improving energy efficiency in energy delivery needs to be better understood,” Riddoch said. “The wider EU debate can benefit from the experience of a Presidency which focuses on energy efficiency not simply in end use but also along the whole supply chain.”

For six months the Council of the European Union will be led by Latvia. Riga has placed on the Council’s agenda the development of a strong European energy union as a major priority[1]. Against a background of enduring geopolitical and economic concerns facing the EU, Latvia’s successes in making the most of primary energy should be commended and widely shared.

Riddoch, in an emailed statement, added that Latvia’s national experience is an important one to the security of supply debate, as the challenge of improving energy efficiency in energy delivery needs to be better understood.

“The wider EU debate can benefit from the experience of a Presidency which focuses on energy efficiency not simply in end use but also along the whole supply chain.”
 
Cogeneration is steadily increasing in Latvia, with renewable energy playing a growing role in powering the CHP fleet. In 2013 Latvia’s CHP plants produced 51% of the total electricity generated in the country (3,170 gigawatt hours (GWh) of electricity) and 69% of the total heat produced (5,038 GWh). The number of cogeneration plants increased by 25% compared to 2012, bringing CHP electrical capacity to 1,251 MW. 
 
Natural gas is still the fuel of choice in Latvia’s CHP fleet, yet the latest additions indicate a clear move towards renewable energy sources (RES). Over the seven years from 2007 to 2013 the penetration of RES increased significantly: in 2007 the electrical capacity produced by cogeneration plants from biogas and fuel-wood was 6 MW. By 2013 this indicator had reached 105 MW.