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Home  /  RESPONSIBILITY  /  Environment and climate  /  Environmental research and biodiversity

ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH AND BIODIVERSITY

Environmental research has been conducted on the Olkiluoto Island since the 1970s, years before electricity production was launched. The early baseline studies created a basis for the environmental monitoring programs aimed at facilitating environmental radiation monitoring and determination of the impact on waters.

Environmental radiation safety at the Olkiluoto nuclear power plant is continuously monitored with many different methods and through the cooperation of several parties. Around 300 samples are taken from the environment of Olkiluoto each year to be analysed in compliance with an environmental radiation monitoring program approved by the Radiation and Nuclear Safety Authority (STUK). There are also several radioactivity monitors in the immediate vicinity of the plant. They continuously measure radiation and are connected to STUK’s automatic network for monitoring external radiation.

Over 100 water samples are taken from the sea surrounding Olkiluoto each year. These samples are subjected to about 1,500 different water quality analyses. Furthermore, the condition of fish stocks is monitored by, for instance, fishing for record-keeping purposes, and a survey among professional and recreational fishermen.
In 2018 test fishing will be carried out in Olkiluoto area in accordance with the environmental monitoring plan. The state of aquatic plants is monitored by means of transect line diving every six years, the last study was carried out in 2016.

Extensive environmental impact assessment procedures have been carried out for the OL3 and OL4 plant unit projects. The final disposal of spent nuclear fuel has been studied since the 1980s, and it has also been evaluated through environmental impact assessments.

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Production of clean electricity secures and maintains biodiversity

Surrounded by four nature conservation areas, the small island of Olkiluoto produces around one-sixth of all the electricity used in Finland. The concentration of energy production in a small geographic area minimizes environmental impacts and makes it possible to preserve other areas in their natural state. Climate change also has a major impact on biodiversity. By producing clean and climate-friendly nuclear power-generated electricity, TVO makes a significant contribution to the mitigation of climate change and promotion of sustainable development.

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