Companies and municipalities reduce annual energy consumption by 10 terawatt hours
Between 2017 and 2021, companies and municipalities that have signed energy efficiency agreements introduced nearly 19,000 different energy efficiency measures that saved 10.3 terawatt hours of energy each year.
The impact of energy saving measures implemented by Finnish industry, the energy, service and real estate sectors and municipalities by the end of 2021 corresponded to the annual energy use of more than half a million electrically heated single-family houses. The majority of saved energy is heat and fuels (81%) and the rest is electricity (19%). In medium-sized industrial companies and the service sector, electricity accounts for a significantly larger share of the savings.
Due to the energy efficiency measures implemented, the annual energy costs of those who have joined the agreements were estimated to be over EUR 430 million lower than they would have been without these measures at the end of 2021.
Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintilä welcomes the active role of different players in society in increasing energy efficiency.
“It is always a good idea to save energy. It is particularly wise in the current situation where energy efficiency contributes to the reliability of our electricity network and prevents power cuts during an energy shortage,” Lintilä says.
In Finland, the voluntary agreements have produced good results for a long time. The measures already taken and the investments in more energy-efficient technologies have a significant impact on today’s energy consumption. Over the years, companies and municipalities have collected knowledge about the ways to use energy more efficiently and showed willingness to address new challenges together. In the current exceptional situation, the many benefits of the energy efficiency agreements and effective and goal-oriented cooperation are more important than ever and will help Finland overcome the energy challenges of the coming winter.
More than EUR 1 billion for energy efficiency investments
The more than 650 companies that have signed the agreement and their nearly 7,000 operational units as well as 121 municipalities and joint municipal authorities have reported on energy efficiency investments amounting to over EUR 1 billion in 2017–2021. Most of these investments are related to the energy efficiency measures introduced in industry and the energy sector. Numerically, most of the measures have been implemented in the service, real estate and municipal sectors.
Between 2017 and 2021, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment supported energy efficiency investments by more than EUR 100 million in companies and organisations that have joined agreements concerning the business, municipal or real estate sector. Support was granted to 1,006 projects that would not have been realised without it.
Carbon neutrality requires efficient use of energy
The energy efficiency measures carried out in 2017–2021 will cut annual carbon dioxide emissions by around 2.3 million tonnes, which corresponds to the carbon footprint of over 220,000 Finnish people, on average. Energy efficiency is essential for building a carbon-neutral society and striving to increase energy self-sufficiency.
“Energy efficiency measures are a crucial means to reach our emission targets, and they also drive our energy expertise forward. There is demand for solutions that improve energy efficiency all over the world,” Lintilä says.
What are energy efficiency agreements?
Energy Efficiency Agreements are an important part of Finland’s Energy and Climate Strategy and the primary means for promoting efficient use of energy in Finland. The agreements implement the energy efficiency obligations laid down in the EU’s Energy Efficiency Directive and monitor their fulfilment.
The current agreement period covers the years 2017–2025. Companies and municipalities that have joined energy efficiency agreements have set themselves a target to reduce the amount of energy they use during the agreement period by at least 7.5% from the year preceding the joining of the agreement.
Energy use in sectors that are committed to the agreements accounts for about 60% of Finland’s total energy consumption. The sectors participating in the agreements between the State and sectors are the Confederation of Finnish Industries, Finnish Food and Drink Industries’ Federation, Finnish Energy, Chemical Industry Federation of Finland, Federation of Finnish Technology Industries, Finnish Forest Industries, Finnish Commerce Federation, Finnish Hospitality Association MaRa, Finnish central organisation for Motor Trades and repairs, Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities, Finnish Association of Building Owners and Construction Clients, and Heating Energy Association.
Hannes Torppa, Special Adviser to the Minister of Economic Affairs, tel. +358 29 504 7405
Pia Kotro, Senior Specialist, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, tel. +358 29 504 7229
Tiina Sekki, Senior Engineer, Energy Authority, tel. +358 29 505 0200
Ulla Suomi, Director, Monitoring and Evaluation, Motiva, tel. +358 40 733 9972