The operations are managed with a certified environmental management system that complies with the international standard ISO 14001:2015, and includes as well an integrated energy efficiency system.
The system is EMAS-registered, and the goal of the management system is increasing the level and continuous improvement of environmental protection. TVO has identified the environmental and energy aspects of its operations and determined that eight of them are major aspects. The significance of environmental and energy aspects are assessed on the basis of statutory and permit requirements as well as by observing the severity/utility of the impact, probability, and impacts to the stakeholder groups. Also TVO’s opportunity to influence the issue are affecting the assessment process.
TVO has specified for significant environmental and energy aspects
that are confirmed by the Company Management. An environmental team of experts from various organisational units monitors the achievement of the targets on a regular basis, at intervals of about two months. Other subjects discussed in the meetings of the team include potential environmental non-conformances and observations, as well as topical regulatory matters and other environmental issues. The team acts as an expert, advisor, and information forwarding party in environmental matters. In 2018, the focal area of targets was to enhance the environmental risk management and to add environmental training and communication. The achievement of the objectives of the environmental programme is described in full under
The feasibility of the environmental management system is assessed semi-annually in conjunction with the management review. If necessary, corrective actions are specified to ensure that the goals are reached. TVO identifies all statutory and other requirements pertaining to its operations and systematically monitors the requirements for any changes. Compliance with the requirements is also assessed in conjunction with the management review. Furthermore, TVO’s operations are regularly assessed both within the organization and by means of external audits.
Anticipation to improve environmental safety
An environmental accident took place at the Olkiluoto nuclear power plant in 2018 when oil leaked from a work machine into the soil. A total of 9 metric tons of contaminated soil was removed. During the year, an accident that had occurred during the construction of OL1 plant unit was also detected. Corrective measures were carried out and supervised by an external operator, and a total of 250 metric tons of contaminated soil was removed. Five cases of minor environmental damage also took place. Three of these were indoor oil leaks, and in two cases, a minor volume of oil leaked into soil.
TVO utilises a system of preventive safety observations to prevent environmental accidents, as only identified risks can be controlled. The target specified for observations related to the environment and energy efficiency for 2018 was 80 observations during the year. With 106 observations made, the target was more than achieved. The safety observations concerned, for example, waste handling, management of chemicals, energy efficiency, and malfunctions of machines. All the safety observations made are monitored and any deficiencies are eliminated immediately to avoid accidents. The environmental authorities are informed of all significant environmental non-conformances and events.
Active communication with stakeholders
Stakeholders have a key role for a company that is engaged in environmentally responsible business. The Olkiluoto Visitors' Center receives about 12,000 visitors each year. The visitors are openly told about TVO’s operations, and their questions are answered. Each year, TVO introduces its operations at various trade fairs or other similar events. Furthermore, TVO arranges open coffee and chat events in the neighbouring municipalities, allowing citizens to speak with representatives of the company. In addition to these it is possible to send feedback or questions in TVO web pages. TVO did not receive any expressions of concern related to environmental issues from external sources in 2018.
The Company's system of initiatives also supports stakeholder involvement in TVO's environmental management. The total number of initiatives in 2018 was 125. Part of the initiatives were directly or indirectly related to the reduction of the environmental impacts of the operations or to the improvement of energy efficiency.