International

Oulun Energia is building a solar energy revolution in the dark North

23.02.2017

Surprisingly many large or middle-sized Finnish companies could generate a significant amount of the used electric power by emission-free and genuinely environment-friendly solar energy.

Oulun Energia Oy is a forerunner of Finnish electric power products and services. It has invested heavily in solar energy production and is aiming at efficiently realising and promoting the cost efficiency of solutions that utilise solar energy to both companies and consumers.

“Many people find it surprising that in Oulu, Oulun Energia’s home town, you can receive the same amount of solar energy annually as in Northern Germany,” says Jari Pirkola, the Business Director of Energy services of Oulun Energia. 

“It’s a mind-blowing thought. Many large companies and operators have stopped to think about this and come to the conclusion that it is worth the effort. It would be sheer madness not to utilise solar energy.”


Helsinki University's Viikki Campus is coolde by solar energy

A 140 kW solar power plant was connected to the network at Helsinki University’s Viikki campus in August 2015. The plant was built in the main building of the campus, Korona Information Centre. Solar energy covers nearly one hundred per cent of the energy needed for cooling the campus.

“We are committed to promoting the use of renewable energy. Our aim and duty is to reduce the size of the carbon footprint of the university,” says Aimo Hämäläinen, the Deputy Manager of Helsinki University Premises and Real Estate Centre. “This is an excellent investment in renewable energy and is well-suited for the main building of the largest know-how centre of biological and environmental sciences in Finland.”

According to Hämäläinen, the decision on the supplier was easy to make. “Oulun Energia had the aim to prove the market and us as well, of course, that they can realise this kind of projects very well and at a competitive price. Oulun Energia helped us to get the best possible solution.”


The largest media industry company in Northern Finland is utilising solar energy

The construction of the largest solar power plant in Northern Finland on the roof of Kaleva printing house was completed in August 2015.

“We designed and installed the solar power plant for Kaleva as a turnkey solution. After its completion, the plant was the largest of its kind in Finland for quite some time,” says Jari Pirkola.

“We had no intention to build the largest solar power plant in Finland. The plant was first measured against our needs according to our power consumption – and accidently it then turned out to be the largest one in Finland,” tells Esko Jokelainen, the CFO of Kaleva.

In the daytime solar power covers 90 per cent of the power needed by Kaleva printing house.

“When we buy market price electric power, which is cheaper at night, we can avoid using the expensive daytime electric power by using our own solar power. Companies having a high power consumption in the daytime should consider this form of power.”

The investment decision was made as for any other investments. 

“From my perspective it is simply so that first you calculate the potential benefit and then compare it with the sum to be invested,” Jokelainen sums up.


More info www.oulunenergia.fi