Wednesday 5/12/21
ENERGY

Renewable energy consumption outpaces fossil fuels in Finland

The consumption of transport fuels decreased due to the effects of the coronavirus crisis.
Protesters against Fortum and the coal plant in Helsinki. Photo: @Elokapina.
A protest held in August 2020 in Helsinki against the state-owned energy firm Fortum. Photo: Twitter/@Elokapina/file photo.

The use of renewable energy sources decreased by 1% in 2020, but their share of total energy consumption grew to 40%.

According to Statistics Finland's data, for the first time since the compilation of the energy statistics started, the consumption of renewable energy was higher than the consumption of fossil fuels and peat combined.

Altogether, the use of fossil fuels and peat went down by 10% compared to 2019. Their share of total energy consumption decreased to 37%. The drop was biggest for peat, the consumption of which fell by one quarter. Consumption of coal also decreased significantly, by 22%.

The share of nuclear energy was 19%. Together, nuclear power and oil still account for 40% of the energy consumed in the country.

Some external factors that have influenced this development. The ban on the use of hard coal for energy production, which will enter into force in 2029, is already beforehand affecting the decrease of coal consumption. In addition, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the consumption of transport fuels, which is usually quite stable, decreased, which was visible as a 6% drop in the consumption of fossil oil.

Energy-consumption-FinlandSource: Statistics Finland.

In 2020, Finland produced 66 TWh of electricity, the same amount as one year earlier. However, total electricity consumption declined by 6% and was 81 TWh. A lower total consumption of electricity was last recorded in 2000. In addition to the warm weather, the lower electricity consumption in industry affected the fall in electricity consumption.

The fall in total consumption was visible in net imports of electricity, which decreased by one quarter.

Hydro, solar, wind power

Production of electricity with hydro power, wind power and solar power increased.

The production of hydro power was influenced by the favourable water situation and wind power by increased capacity and favourable wind conditions. However, their combined share is still very low, just 6%.

The share of solar power is minimal, but its volume has grown fastest for many years. The volume of electricity generated in combined heat and power production as well as with condensing power decreased.

Final consumption of energy went down as a whole by 6%. The fall was biggest in industry, 7%. The share of industry in total final consumption stood at 45%.

The consumption of heating energy for buildings and energy consumption in transport decreased by 6% each. The share of heating energy for buildings was 26% and that of energy consumption in transport 17% of final energy consumption.

Energy imports mainly from Russia

Last year, Finland imported energy products worth 6.7 billion euros, which was 36% less than one year earlier.

Most energy products were imported from Russia, whose share of the value of imports was 54%.

Energy products were exported from Finland to the value of 3.9 billion euros. The value of exports decreased by 32% year over year.

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