The objective of the EPV Infra business area is to provide services for other companies in the EPV Group. EPV Energy’s subsidiary, EPV Alueverkko Oy (EPA), is the second largest electricity transmitter in Finland. EPA’s customers are local distribution network companies, large-scale industry and the energy sector’s generation plants in Ostrobothnia, South Ostrobothnia, Kokkola and Tornio.
In 2016, the company’s electricity transmission was similar to the previous year, but the very cold weather in January helped to break the record of electricity consumption in EPV Alueverkko’s area. During that time the hourly average output of electricity consumption in all of Finland and the momentary level of electricity import also rose to a record high.
Downtime in EPV Alueverkko’s electricity networks reduced by half
In 2016, EPV Alueverkko’s reliability of supply was top class, as the number of disturbances was halved from the previous year. The excellent reliability of supply is a result of EPA’s determined investments in the electricity grid.
The longest downtime of the year occurred when a part of EPA’s network was temporarily connected to a third-party network while the Lapua power station was being renovated. One of the third-party network’s pylons fell over, which resulted in the Lapua and Kauhava-Härmä regions in the EPA area having no electricity for 4.5 hours on 9 June.
Resources for a multiplied quantity of wind power
EPV Alueverkko continued making investments in the grid in 2016. The company built a new power line between Sevo and Kärmeskytö, and the Lapua-Sänkiaho power line was renewed. Also, the Lapua power station was renovated and the old open circuit plant in Kiilapalsta, Vaasa was replaced with a new 110 kV gas-insulated circuit plant.
The continuous upgrading of EPV Alueverkko’s electricity grid improves the reliability of transmission and allows for a growing number of wind power connections. The investments are needed, because there are a number of new wind power farms in the pipeline for EPA’s operating area over the next few years and decades. A total of 140 MW of wind power was connected to the grid in 2016, and in 2017 this amount will grow by at least 120 MW.
Grid connection reform increases customer-friendliness and flexibility
EPV Alueverkko reformed its grid connection principles in 2016. The reform involved updating the connection practices of the electricity grids managed by EPA and simplifying their pricing mechanism. With the reform, joining the grid becomes more customer-friendly and flexible, which also streamlines EPA’s operations.
At the beginning of the year, we transferred from fixed-term regional grid contracts to open-ended contracts.
The single largest electricity consumer in Finland as customer
EPV Teollisuusverkot Oy is a company owned jointly by EPV Energy and Outokumpu and it owns the 110 kV power lines in the Röyttä industrial area in Tornio. One of its customers is the single largest electricity consumer in Finland, the Outokumpu stainless steel mill in Tornio. EPV Teollisuusverkot’s grid licence is currently under consideration at the Energy Authority.