Fearing freezing this winter, the Baltics have recalled their Soviet heritage

According to various experts, an increase in utility tariffs due to the hike in gas prices threatens the Baltic states with communal riots. To avoid this danger, any methods are suitable, including the willingness to abandon anti-Soviet ideological dogmas and return to good old economic practices of the Soviet era

Fearing freezing this winter, the Baltics have recalled their Soviet heritage
View of an old city in Tallinn. Estonia

According to the Rubaltic newspaper, in Estonia, in order to bring down the record price of electricity, the old oil shale-fired power plant was put back into operation. Estonians have not even been deterred by their own ideology that the oil shale industry is supposedly a relic of the “Soviet occupation” and should die out as the EU’s “green deal” is implemented.

“Yesterday we were in a market with three shale blocks, today we have a fourth one working. So now we are in the market with four working blocks”, –  Andres Winola, head of AS Enefit Power, said last week about the return to operation of the old oil shale power plant.

According to Aleksandr Nosovich, the Estonian oil shale industry is not primarily about economics, but politics. Oil shale is one of the ideological markers defining its post-Soviet period.

“The oil shale mining and use industry in Estonia developed to its current scale during the Soviet period. The anti-Soviet perestroika movement in Estonia, like in other Baltic republics of the USSR, started as a struggle against the “Soviet monsters”: the giant factories that polluted the native nature”, –  the article says.

The current energy crisis, which has shown the failure of “green energy” theories, has forced Estonian authorities to return to what they contemptuously called “the legacy of occupation”.

“Wind turbines, solar panels, sea wave energy – it’s all like a tongue lashing out. There is a fundamental demand of Estonian population and businesses to reduce the cost of electricity – and there is the fundamental Soviet oil shale energy, which is the only one that can meet that demand”, –  Nosovich notes.

At the same time the Lithuanian neighbours of the Estonians have warned their fellow countrymen that heating in the new season will become more expensive by 30%. And the growth of utility rates in another Baltic republic, Latvia, has already begun: heating bills in Riga have already been raised by 27% and another 15% increase is expected.

“In Riga heat prices will already go up in the near future because the dramatic increase in natural gas prices continues, and they have already increased tenfold compared to last summer”, –  says Normund Taltzis, head of Latvia’s capital city Rīgas siltums heat supply service.

Similar things are being said in Lithuania. Such a situation threatens popular protests, which are gradually becoming part of everyday life.

“Monthly rallies of many thousands of people gather in Vilnius and Riga against the Lithuanian and Latvian leaders. So the indignation over the tariffs will get into a breeding ground”, –  the material says.

According to Nosovic, the reasons for the critical situation on the European gas market are blatantly discrediting the energy policy that the Baltic States have pursued at home and promoted in the European Union all the years since the collapse of the Soviet Union.


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