WIT Press

Sustainability Of Energy Use In Estonian Settlements And Regions


Free (open access)

Paper DOI









348 kb


H. Hallemaa, H. Vitsur, T. Oja & Ü. Mander


Energy use and the sustainability and economic use thereof are the most essential questions for development, especially for economic development in each country. The effective use of energy has also been the focus of public debate in Estonia since the restoration of independence in 1991. On the one hand, Estonia has a relatively extensive supply of energy resources. On the other hand, energy use is generally not very economical and sustainable. This paper characterizes the main aspects of the development of sustainable and effective energy use in each sector of society in Estonia based on the classification of settlements and development units. We have performed emergy and exergy analyses of society in cities, counties and regions. The concept of emergy and exergy has been used in simplified and very general terms. The rate of use of renewable energy generally remains low, but is relatively higher in the southern and central part of Estonia. However, the rate of the use of wood for heat production in cities and counties and in Estonia as a whole has increased in the last decade. The average emergy rate for the whole country (0.109) is significantly lower than the average for most counties (0.12-0.71), except for the oil-shale region of Ida-Viru County (0.009). It is also relatively low in the capital city of Tallinn (0.080). The northern and north-eastern part of the country (including Tallinn) is remarkably less sustainable than the rest of the country. One of the biggest energy users and at the same time one of the most inefficient/uneconomical energy users is car transport, especially in the cities. Keywords: car transport, cities, counties, emergy, energy system, exergy, sustainability of energy use, regions.


car transport, cities, counties, emergy, energy system, exergy,sustainability of energy use, regions.