Estonian power prices surge on Estlink 2 outage

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Estonian power prices surge on Estlink 2 outage

Mon May 4, 2015 9:01am GMT

OSLO May 4 (Reuters) - Power prices in Estonia surged on Monday due to an outage on the 650-megawatt Estlink 2 submarine power cable to Finland which sent the spread between Estonian and Finnish prices to almost 10 euros, data from the Nord Pool Spot (NPS) exchange showed.

The outage on Saturday reducing total transmission capacity between the two countries to some 350 MW and is expected to last until May 16, Estonian power grid operator Elering said.

The spot power price for Monday delivery in Estonia was set at 36.95 euros per megawatt-hour (MWh) versus 26.99 euros/MWh in Finland.

The price spread for Sunday delivery was 11.19 euros/MWh and for Saturday 6.22 euros/MWh, while it was zero for Friday, before the outage started.

The outage was caused by damage to a transformer that converts alternating current to direct current to send power across the Gulf of Finland, said Elering, which co-owns Estlink 2 with Finnish grid operator Fingrid.

Reduced transmission capacity means Estonia can import less power from the Nordics and has to rely on more expensive supply from domestic burning oil shale, a locally mined fossil fuel.

Finland and Estonia belong to a different synchronous power system but are members of the Nordic power market.

Last year, spot power prices in Finland averaged 36.02 euros/MWh versus in 37.61 euros/MWh in Estonia. (Reporting by Nerijus Adomaitis; editing by Jason Neely)