District heating – the role of EU investments in Latvia
Study | 10 February 2021
Heating is a basic need in Latvia, where the average heating season lasts 200 days. More than half (58%) of Latvia’s primary energy consumption is used for heating. This report from Bankwatch and Green Liberty analyses the district heating projects implemented in Latvia with the support of EU funds during the last 20 years.
The report finds that EU funds have supported renewed and expanded networks, new efficient boilers, and the switch of most of the system from gas (and even dirtier resources) to biomass. Such investments not only make district heating more efficient and less polluting, but they also make it more attractive from the financial perspective. As a result of these upgrades, district heating can be the cheapest form of heat, and it can also provide full service for the customer and ensure stability, safety and comfort at the best value for money. However, Latvia can do more to ensure the fuel for its district heating system is truly efficient, sustainable and renewable, moving away from biomass and towards innovative solutions such as solar plants, grid stability mechanisms and greater energy efficiency.
The full study in Latvian can be accessed here.