In 2022, Lithuania's clean energy state was divided between various sources. Around a quarter (24.3%) of the total electricity generation represented low-carbon energy sources. Wind energy made up over half of this, accounting for slightly more than 12%, while solar and hydropower claimed 3.35% and 3.5% respectively. In terms of fossil energy, they were split between gas, which accounted for close to 5%, and fossil fuels, commanding just over 8%. Biofuels contributed to more than half of this, with just over 5%. It's noteworthy that a significant proportion of Lithuania's electricity consumption, to be precise, 67.5%, was from net imports. During peak periods this shot up to an overwhelming 92%.
Looking forward, there are several strategies Lithuania could employ to increase low-carbon electricity generation. A primary focus should be on expanding existing wind energy infrastructure, as it already serves as the leading clean energy source in the country. Looking beyond its borders, Lithuania can glean insights from countries with successful low-carbon energy profiles. Denmark, for instance, generates a remarkable 52% of its electricity from wind, while other nations such as France, Ukraine, and Slovakia meet the majority of their electricity needs using nuclear power, generating 61%, 58%, and 57% respectively. These examples reveal wind and nuclear power as viable options for Lithuania to significantly enhance its green energy output.
Turning our gaze to the past, Lithuania's history of low-carbon electricity demonstrates a strong commitment to nuclear power, although the journey was marked by fluctuations. In the late 1980s, nuclear power experienced an initial decline before recovering strongly with an increase of 3.6 TWh in 1988 and 3.8 TWh in 1989. The 1990s was a more turbulent period, with downsides of -4.6 TWh in 1994 and -3.7 TWh in 1999, though there were also years of strong growth such as 1995 and 1996. Despite these challenges, Lithuania persisted with nuclear energy into the new millennium. Significant setbacks were encountered in the mid-2000s, when nuclear generation fell by -4.8 TWh in 2005 and a further -1.7 TWh in 2006. Yet, the country managed to stabilize the situation in the years following, ending the decade with a modest gain in 2009. The historical data clearly underlines a continued reliance on nuclear power, despite the periodic setbacks. Moreover, the recent entry of hydropower into the mix, albeit with a slight decline in 2020, offers further potential for the nation's low-carbon energy canvas.