The Hanhikivi peninsula has diverse flora and fauna. A Natura 2000 nature conservation area and a migratory route of birds are located just a couple of kilometers from the Hanhikivi 1 construction site. There is plenty of room for both the project and nature: animals ranging from elk to foxes and cattle that graze on a seaside meadow next door thrive in the area.
These important nature sites and a host of other environmental matters have been considered in detail in the Hanhikivi 1 project. Fennovoima, the developer of the nuclear power plant, RAOS Project, the plant supplier, RAOS’ main contractor Titan-2, and a number of subcontractors jointly ensure that the environmental impact during construction is minimized. For example, all nature conservation areas have been excluded from the construction site and the impact on the local nature is being regularly monitored.
“We have a common goal. We carry out the environmental work together with the plant supplier and main contractor,” explains Marjaana Vainio-Mattila, Fennovoima’s EHS Director.
The environment and the environmental impact will be taken into account during all construction stages. Most of the work is proactive: thorough planning and identification of environmental risks.
According to Vainio-Mattila, this requires a standardized operating method, which is indicated by an ISO 14001 environmental certificate granted to the parties of the Hanhikivi 1 project. The certificate is a worldwide recognition that the organization considers the environmental impact in all of its operations and strives to minimize it.
“Creation of the system was a major effort, but it offers obvious benefits. Continuous improvement is an especially interesting future opportunity.”
“We have received positive feedback on our environmental events for the local residents."
The quality of the air and seawater, as well as the noise level of the construction site, are examples of issues monitored on the Hanhikivi peninsula. Studies on the fish stock, benthic fauna, and aquatic vegetation have also been made in the area.
“We are always vigilant in environmental matters and listen closely to the authorities and contractors,” Vainio-Mattila says.
Taking into account the residents of Pyhäjoki and its neighboring areas is also important.
“We have received positive feedback on our bi-annual environmental events for the local residents. We warn them about especially noisy construction stages, for example, to be a good neighbor and to operate in a manner that does not harm the environment,” says Heidi Karjalainen, Fennovoima’s Site Environmental Manager.
In addition to Fennovoima’s environmental unit, environmental experts from RAOS Project and Titan-2 are responsible for environmental matters at the construction site. Together, they form an environmental team that discusses the construction site’s topical issues.
The team’s work mostly comprises the creation of shared operating methods and instructions. The environmental team also carries out construction site inspections, provides training to contractors, and participates in the planning of the construction of the site area.
Kati Oravisjärvi, Head of Environmental Safety Division of the main contractor Titan-2, praises the team’s meetings. She says that the meetings make working at the construction site easier, as you can always give a well-justified answer to all questions from the contractors.
“We have instructions for everything,” she says, mentioning oil spill prevention, waste management, and the processing of chemicals as examples.
Johanna Koskenranta, Environmental Manager of the plant supplier RAOS Project, emphasizes the fact that environmental matters are part of the safety culture.
“All employees receive training on occupational health and safety and the environment, for example,” she says.
The environment is also a key theme in the site access training arranged by Fennovoima, which all people working at the Hanhikivi 1 construction site must complete.
“The contractors are extremely interested in environmental matters. It's great if they can take the good operating methods they have learned at our construction site with them to other sites,” Vainio-Mattila says.
Read more about the environmental work in our Corporate Responsibility Report.
How is the environment cared for at the construction site?
- As the licensee, Fennovoima is responsible for compliance with environmental laws and permit conditions.
- Fennovoima monitors the state of the environment together with RAOS Project in accordance with a jointly agreed environmental monitoring program. The companies also have their own monitoring targets.
- Titan-2 handles the practical monitoring work on behalf of RAOS Project in cooperation with external consultants.