Climate impacts

Our aim is to reduce climate-changing carbon dioxide emissions. 

Climate impacts

We strive to reduce the carbon dioxide emissions of our energy production by 40 per cent by 2025 compared with the 1990 levels. Our long-term target is climate-neutral energy production.

In 2017, the carbon dioxide emissions of our fossil-based energy production remained at the previous year's level.

We increased renewable energy production in 2017 with heat pumps, wood pellets and biogas, which yielded a record amount of energy. With the aid of wood pellets and biogas, we reduced our carbon dioxide emissions by about 2.3 per cent compared with a situation where we would have used fossil fuels only (1.5 per cent in 2016).

In 2018, the amount of renewable energy will increase further when the Salmisaari wood pellet heating plant starts production use and the new heating and cooling plant under the Esplanade Park is completed.

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

Carbon dioxide emissions

 Mt CO2
actual 1990 3.4
actual 2017 3.3
target 2025 2.0

Specific carbon dioxide emissions

g C02/kWh*

 g C02/kWh
2013 250
2014 240
2015 230
2016 250
2017 250

Carbon dioxide emissions, total


2013 3300
2014 3200
2015 2900
2016 3300
2017 3300

* The specific carbon dioxide emissions g/kWh are calculated by dividing the emissions of our energy production and co-owned production by the total energy sold. Production and distribution losses have been taken into account when calculating the amount of energy produced. In 2017, the calculation was specified by including in the emissions of electricity used in heat pumps and district heat pumping.

We participate in the EU Emission Trading Scheme, and we carry out emission reduction within the scheme either by ourselves or by purchasing emission allowances from areas where emission reduction is more cost-effective. The Emission Trading Scheme guarantees desired emission reduction at the EU level.

Helen has been granted a total of 6.9 million tonnes of carbon dioxide in emission allowances for the period 2013–2020. In the 2017 trading, the emission allowances and corresponding allowances bought physically totalled 0.2 million tonnes.

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, our operations may also cause other greenhouse gas emissions, such as fluorinated gas (F-gas) emissions, nitrous oxide and methane, as a result of leaks or other exceptional situations. The climate impacts of other greenhouse gas emissions are very small in comparison with our carbon dioxide emissions.

We use F-gases in the cooling and electrical equipment. We keep a record of the amount of F-gases and prevent leakage in the equipment with appropriate maintenance and inspections. In 2017, a total of 55 kilograms of refrigerants was leaked.

We use SF₆ gas, i.e. sulphur hexafluoride, in electrical equipment as an insulation agent and as an arc-quenching medium. We use 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 below 0.25 per cent of the total amount of gas. We reached these targets in 2017 as the emissions amounted to 0.12 per cent of the total amount (0.34 per cent in 2016).