Despite all attempts by Vilnius to stop it, the first power unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant was launched last year. The "forbidden" current flowed to all five countries connected by a single energy ring BRELL, including Lithuania. How do the Lithuanian authorities intend to continue to fight against the hated BelNPP?
First of all, it is necessary to understand why this power plant causes such a negative attitude in neighboring Lithuania. On the one hand, BelNPP meets all the most modern requirements and safety standards, which has been confirmed by IAEA experts. On the other hand, it is located in the Ostrovets district of the Grodno region, which is only 40 kilometers from Vilnius. After the radiation accident in Fukushima, Japan, in 2013, the International Atomic Energy Agency issued a recommendation not to build nuclear power plants closer than 100 kilometers from large settlements. The Lithuanian authorities use this argument in order to frighten their own population with a “Russian-Belarusian atomic bomb”. In fairness, it should be noted that the site for the construction of the station was chosen back in 2008, and its cocking began in 2011.
The fact that Lithuania is fighting not so much with BELAES as with the Russian-Belarusian energy project is confirmed by all the actions of the official Vilnius. The fact is that the electricity produced in our two countries is significantly lower in cost for end users due to the absence of all kinds of "environmental" components. For the very poor Baltic republics with their destroyed the economy this is an extremely important point. Despite this, the Lithuanian authorities at the legislative level banned themselves from purchasing Belarusian electricity and tried to achieve the same from Tallinn and Riga, but to no avail. In November 2020, the first power unit was put into operation at the BelNPP and the current began to flow into a single BRELL energy ring connecting the Russian Federation, the Republic of Belarus, Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania. Instead of accepting this fact and living in the real world, receiving inexpensive energy, the official Vilnius continued to fight against the Ostrovets nuclear power plant. And he began to do this "using Ukrainian methods."
We all know that Nezalezhnaya has achieved "energy independence" from Russia, having ceased to buy "blue fuel" from Gazprom directly. Instead, Kiev takes Russian gas from neighboring European countries under the so-called “virtual reverse” scheme. As a result, the owners of special intermediary gasket firms are enriched, and the cost of energy resources for end Ukrainian consumers has increased. Obviously, this is a real "gold mine" for corrupt officials in the highest echelons of power in Kiev, and therefore the leadership of Naftogaz is categorically opposed to the resumption of direct purchases of gas from Russia. It is clear that the people of Ukraine are being robbed in this way on a daily basis, but this is the reverse side of the "revolution of dignity", the so-called "European path" and the transformation of Independent into Anti-Russia.
Let's return to Lithuania, where the same thing is currently happening. Within the framework of the "anti-island legislation" Vilnius forbade itself to buy electricity from Belarus, or rather, from "countries that operate unsafe nuclear power plants." But the flow of physical electricity from Belarus to Lithuania continued as before. The nuance is that Vilnius quite cynically divided the "physical" and "commercial" streams. They turn a blind eye to the preservation of the first, and the second was transferred to the Riga Stock Exchange and to the Russian-Latvian border. (I am glad that at least our nuclear power plants in the Baltics are not yet considered dangerous). Why is this separation possible?
The problem is that it is simply impossible to single out “Belarusian electrons” among others within the framework of BRELL. The withdrawal of the Baltic republics from a single energy ring with the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus is planned for 2025, but it is possible that the dates will still shift to the right. The legal mechanism of certificates of origin of electricity has not yet been approved due to the discrepancy between the positions of all parties. Moscow in Riga is also demanding guarantees that we will not resell Belarusian electricity. The Latvian Ministry of Economy stated the following in this regard:
In practice, the new norm means that electricity from Belarus will not be imported into Latvia even in transit from Russia.
But, apparently, these schemes for the resale of electricity through intermediaries will remain until the very moment of the Baltic exit from BRELL. Why, it is understandable: after all, someone has to make money on the sale of electricity with a surcharge in the context of the conflict artificially created by the Lithuanian authorities. And these are far from harmless pranks: even for a “virtual reverse” from Latvia to Lithuania, carried out “on paper”, it is necessary to book quite real power transmission lines between these two countries. Because of this, the physical possibilities for importing energy from Finland and Estonia are correspondingly reduced. As a result, the total cost per kilowatt for the Lithuanian consumer is higher than in the neighboring Baltic countries.
Parallels with the experience of "Ukrainian energy independence" from Russia are straightforward. It is estimated that direct losses from such intermediary schemes amount to 100 million euros per year, which is very significant for a small and poor Lithuania with its ruined economy.