In 2015, the final energy consumption in Estonia was about 2.72 Mtoe. Residential, the largest consuming sector, recorded a 6-percentage points decrease in its share of total final energy consumption since 2000 – from 38% to 32%. Industry decreased its share by 5 percentage points – from 24% down to 19% in 2015. Over the same period, the transport sector increased the share around 6% and tertiary and agriculture 3%. In 2015, the overall increase in final energy consumption accounted for approximately 12% compared to 2000.

Figure 1: Final energy consumption by sector (normal climate)


Energy efficiency for final consumers, as measured by ODEX, improved by an average of 2% per year from 2000 to 2015. In industry, the pace of energy efficiency improvements has been steady (4.6% per year since 2000) and in the residential sector about 1.8% per year. For the rest of the final consumers the improvement of the energy efficiency index has been marginal.

Figure 2: Technical Energy Efficiency Index


Regarding energy efficiency, Estonia has set a target by 2020 not to increase the total final consumption as compared to the year 2010, when the consumption had been 2.82 Mtoe. In 2015, the final energy consumption in Estonia was 2.75 Mtoe, i.e. the consumption has dropped by 3%. Today’s level of final consumption of energy in all sectors, and the forecast for the next ten years shows that the greatest growth as well as need for sectoral measures for saving electricity, motor fuels and other fuels will be in the households, industrial and transport sectors. In the new National Development Plan for the Energy Sector, the Government has committed to keep the final consumption lower than 2.75 Mtoe per year in 2030. Maintaining the final consumption at the 2010 level means that energy efficiency must be increased in nearly all sectors, but particularly in the household, industrial, transportation and public sectors. It is planned to pay special attention to the public sector energy use as the behaviour of the public sector must serve as a role model for other sectors.

Table 1: Sample of cross-cutting measures

MeasuresNEEAP measuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
The Energy Sector Organisation ActyesThe Act sets the requirements for improving energy efficiency and designates the obligated parties in the public as well as private sector defining the roles of energy market participants in promotion of energy efficiencyThe total energy savings during the period (i.e., 2014 – 2020) are estimated to be 593 ktoe.Link
Energy related taxationyesIn Estonia, the excise tax rates on fuels and electricity are relatively high. In 2015, the revenues from energy related excise duties into state budget were 432.0 M€.During 2014–2020, the estimated total final energy consumption savings from the energy related taxation will be 4.8 TWh (0.41 Mtoe). Link
Source: MURE


In 2015, space heating accounted for 62% of the sector’s consumption, electrical appliances for 6%, water heating for 21% and cooking for 11%. While electrical appliances recorded a 15 percentage points and energy consumption of cooking by 0.4% increase, then water heating decreased approximately by 11.4%. The residential energy consumption decreased during the period from 2000 to 2015, about 8%, due to measures taken in space heating end-use. Energy consumption of space heating has decreased from 18.7 toe in 2000 to 14.2 toe per heated m2 in 2015.

Figure 3: Energy consumption of space heating per m2


Figure 4: Energy consumption by end-use per dwelling


In 2015, the final energy consumption of residential buildings was 0.071 Mtoe lower than in 2000. On the one hand, there was only one main factor contributed to decrease energy consumption over the period – energy savings (about 0.26 Mtoe) and some other factors (0.025 Mtoe). However, all other measures (climate, more dwellings, lifestyles: more appliances per dwelling and larger homes) have, unfortunately, increased the energy consumption of the residential sector.

Figure 5: Main drivers of the energy consumption variation in households


The electricity consumption per employee has increased by 4% per year since 2001. The reason is the introduction of new buildings with conditioners and the wider use of other electrical equipment. The total consumption of energy in the service sector has been rather stable since 2004. In 2015, however, energy consumption has decreased slightly, but the number of employees has  increased.

Figure 6: Energy and electricity consumption per employee (normal climate)


Up to now, the energy efficiency policy in the buildings sector has been targeted mainly at households through various measures that increase energy efficiency of residential buildings. The Government has decided that investing into buildings for improving the energy efficiency must continue, while the public sector must lead the way in maintaining and constructing buildings. Investments into the energy efficiency of apartment buildings must be continued as well and opportunities to expand state measures for promoting energy efficiency in family houses are to be found. In the heating sector, investments into the development or renovation of district heating systems are supported. Drawing up local development plans for energy supply in municipalities are financially supported by the central Government. Also, it is planned to support local, as alternatives to district heating, heat supply systems if these prove to be the most sustainable solutions for the region and ensure compliance with environmental standards.

Table 2: Sample of policies and measures implemented in the building sector

MeasuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
Grant for renovation of apartment buildings (2015-2020) In Estonia, the reconstruction of apartment buildings has been supported by state for more than 10 years. During the period of 2015 – 2020 the first opportunity to apply for a grant related to performance of apartment buildings was again provided from April 2015, when the first phase of the new grant issue was opened. As in case of several previous supports, the financing of the grant is based on the EU structural funds.Estimated energy savings from the measure (co-)financed from the EU structural funds over the period 2014 – 2020, are about 241.1 GWhLink
Modernisation of street lighting (2015-2020)It is planned to renovate with the support of the measure at least 7000 street lights by 2018, 14 000 lighting points by 2020 and 22 000 by 2023.According to the forecast in the 3rd NEEAP, for total final energy savings from upgrade of street lighting over the entire obligation period (2014–2020) is estimated to be 211 GWh (0.756 PJ).Link
Source: MURE


In 2015, the road transport accounted for 93.6% of the total energy consumption in the transport sector. Compared to the 2000, this share of the sector has increased by about 5%. The share of rail transport has fallen from 7.8% in 2000 to 2.4% in 2015.

Figure 7: Split of the transport energy consumption by mode


In 2015, the passenger traffic volume of bus transport enterprises decreased by 20% and of rail transport enterprises by 7% compared to 2000. The passenger traffic volume by private car accounted for 11.4 billion passenger kilometres, which is approximately 71% higher than in 2000.

Figure 8: Share of transport in passenger traffic


There was a sharp decrease in the carriage of goods by rail – from 8.1 Mtkm in 2000 to 3.1 Mtkm in 2015. The freight volume of Estonian road transport enterprises almost doubled (6.3 Mtkm in 2015 versus 3.9 Mtkm in 2000). The high share of road in the total traffic is a trend that goes against the expectation of policymakers.

Figure 9: Share of modes in freight traffic


In 2015, energy consumption in the transport sector was 42% higher than in 2000. This trend is due to the fact that the effect of the increase in passenger movements (passenger transport by passenger cars has almost doubled in comparison with 2000, etc., increase almost +0,14 Mtoe) and changes in the structure (freight traffic on roads increased by around 0.2 Mtoe) exceeded the effect of energy savings (around 0.17 Mtoe).

Figure 10: Main drivers of the energy consumption variation in transport


Up to the present, the primary instrument for influencing energy use in the transportation sector has been excise duties, and the fuel excise has been raised on ten occasions during the last 15 years. The Government has decided to foster the use of cars with lower fuel consumption and environmental impact. Projects aimed at improving energy efficiency in the transportation sector have been implemented under the green investment scheme. The consumption of energy by the transport sector is planned to be reduced through three lines of activity: decreasing the need for transport, including making freight transport more efficient and environmentally sustainable and considering sustainable commuting principles in the planning process; increasing the use of public transport and making vehicles more ecological.

Table 3: Policies and measures into force in the transport sector

MeasuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
Support for the purchase of electric vehiclesThe aim of the measure is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the Estonian transport sector by increasing the use of electric vehicles and to promote electric transport. Support shall be granted to achieve the objective of the action.The amount of avoided CO2 emissions from the realization of the measure are estimated at 150 kt CO2 per year..Link
Free (zero-fare) public transport in City of TallinnSince 2013 the City of Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, provides free (zero-fare) public transportation for all its inhabitants on all public transport servicesSome studies (e.g., O. Cats, 2014 and 2016) have stated that while the share of car users decreased by 5%, the average distance travelled by car increased resulting with a 31% increase in total vehicle-km. This is explained by the increase in daily travel distance per person.Link
Source: MURE


Final energy consumption of industry has decreased significantly by 4%/year over the period 2000 to 2015. Approximately 1/3 of the energy consumed by the energy intensive industries – non-metallic minerals and paper. The importance of the remaining energy intensive industries (chemicals, non-ferrous metals, steel) in the Estonian manufacturing industry are small.

Figure 11: Final energy consumption by branch


Energy savings (0,46 Mtoe) as well as structural changes towards less energy intensive branches  (0.15 Mtoe) led to decrease the energy consumption  since 2000. On the opposite, the growth in activity has partly offset the saving effect. As a result, energy consumption has increased by 0.05 Mtoe over the period 2000-2015.

Figure 12: Main drivers of the energy consumption variation in industry


It has been estimated that in industry, there is the potential for a 30% of heat and 10% electricity conservation, and attaining this will require adoption of new technologies and an increase in awareness.  The focus of energy efficiency in industry must be on the development of energy and resource efficiency. The measure designed to inform industrial companies about the potential for energy savings and resource efficiency as well as to analyse resource use  has been launched.

Table 4: Policies and measures into force in industry

MeasuresDescriptionExpected savings, impact evaluationMore information available
Support for trainings on energy and resource managementSupport budget of 0.400 M€ considering 0.800 M€ as the total cost of the measure. The support rate per project is up to 50%.Medium impactLink
Support for awareness campaigns on energy and resource management in industrySupport budget of 79.8 thousand € The campaign events will be arranged up to the end of 2020. The 100% support rate per project is foreseen.The measure is nationwide.Link
Support for energy and resource auditsSupport budget of 1.5 M€, considering 3.0 M€ as the total cost of the measure. The support rate per project is foreseen up to 50%. It is planned to support 300 enterprises.The target indicator – the resource productivity – set for 2020 is 0.38 €/kg, cf. 0.34 €/kg in 2012. Link
Source: MURE