Climate impacts

Our aim is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions. 

Climate impacts

Our aim is to reduce carbon dioxide emissions that cause climate change by 20 per cent by 2020 compared with the 1990 level. Our longer-term target is climate-neutral energy production in 2050.

The carbon dioxide emissions of our fossil energy production in 2016 amounted to about 3.3 million tonnes. Emissions grew by 12 per cent on the previous year because more coal was used in energy production than before due to the changed market situation.

In 2016, we increased renewable energy production with wood pellets, biogas and heat pumps, which yielded a record amount of energy. With the aid of wood pellets and biogas, we reduced our carbon dioxide emissions by about 1.8 per cent compared with a situation where we would have used fossil fuels only. In 2017, we will further increase renewable energy by building a pellet heating plant in Salmisaari and a heating and cooling plant underneath the Esplanade Park.

The specific emissions and origin of electricity, heat and cooling sold by us.

Carbon dioxide emissions

 Mt CO2
actual 2016 3.3
target 2020 2.7


Specific carbon dioxide emissions

g C02/kWh

 g C02/kWh
2012 250
2013 250
2014 240
2015 230
2016 250

Carbon dioxide emissions, total


2012 3400
2013 3300
2014 3200
2015 2900
2016 3300

We are part of the EU emissions trading scheme, and we carry out emissions reduction within the scheme either by ourselves or by purchasing emission allowances from areas where emissions reduction is more cost-effective. The emissions trading scheme guarantees desired emissions reductions at the EU level.

Helen has been granted a total of 7.1 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in emission allowances for the period 2013–2020. In the 2016 trading, the emission allowances and corresponding allowances bought physically totalled 1.8 million tonnes.

We are reducing our carbon dioxide emissions by improving energy efficiency, maintaining high efficiency in combined heat and power generation, promoting energy saving measures, and increasing the share of renewable energy in our energy production.

We measure our emissions ourselves according to the monitoring plans approved by the authorities. An independent verifier ensures that the fuel amounts, temperature values, emission coefficients and carbon dioxide emissions are correct.

Other greenhouse gas emissions

In addition to carbon dioxide, we also produce other greenhouse gas emissions, such as F-gas emissions. The climate impacts of emissions from F-gases used in our cooling and electrical equipment are very small compared with our carbon dioxide emissions.

SF6 gas, i.e. sulphur hexafluoride, is used in electrical equipment as an insulation agent and an arc-quenching medium.

We use SF6 gas in closed systems only. We also take care of the leakproofness of SF6 equipment and the recovery and recycling of gas, and we monitor the gas balance on a regular basis. Our target is to reduce SF6 emissions from machinery to under 0.25 per cent of the total amount of gas. We did not reach this target in 2016: total emissions were 75 kilogrammes, i.e. 0.34 per cent of the total amount (2015: 0.11 per cent). The main reason for the increase was equipment failure that took place in the overhaul of one set of machinery, which resulted in a release of about 50 kilogrammes of gas into the atmosphere. The total amount of gas released into the atmosphere as a result of our operations was 100 kilogrammes.