With a cumulative score of 2.67, Finland ranks number 4 among developed markets and number 4 in the global ranking.
- Developed markets
2.65 / 5
2.59 / 5
2.83 / 5
Net-zero goal and strategy
Finland’s government, led by Prime Minister Sanna Marin, has set a target of reaching net-zero emissions by 2035. This is more ambitious than the wider European Union’s goal to reach net zero by 2050. To meet its target, Finland plans to cut emissions alongside preserving some of its vast forests for carbon sequestration.
The country achieved its 2020 objective for 38% of final energy consumption to come from renewables ahead of schedule in 2014. It is now aiming to reach 51% by 2030.
Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC)
As a member of the EU, Finland is part of the bloc’s joint Nationally Determined Contribution (NDC), meaning its plan to help achieve the goals of the Paris Agreement. The updated NDC, submitted in December 2020, pledges to reduce emissions by 55% before the end of 2030, compared to 1990 levels.
Fossil fuel phase-out policy
Finland is aiming to phase out coal from heat and electricity production by 2029.
Finland has no scheduled auctions for renewables subsidies, as of 2022. The last auction was held in 2018, when Finland’s Energy Authority tendered 4 terawatt-hours (TWh) of capacity through a technology-neutral auction and awarded seven wind farms with 12-year feed-in premium contracts. Until 2017, Finland offered a feed-in premium for wind and various bioenergy technologies.
The government submitted a bill in October 2018 to ban the use of coal for energy, with a draft deadline of May 2029 for most plants. It has agreed to a €90 million ($101 million) investment support scheme for plants that switch from coal before 2025. Domestically mined peat generation – which has similar carbon emissions as lignite – will, however, be slowly phased out only in the 2030s. Policy makers envision that nuclear will replace at least part of the outgoing coal capacity; two new reactors are expected to come online by 2022 and 2028.
Power prices and costs
Finland’s power prices rank among the three cheapest countries in the EU. This is largely due to a well-functioning, integrated Nordic electricity market with cheap hydroelectricity making up a large share of generation.
Power prices in 2022 have soared in line with prices of other European countries. This has been due to high coal and gas prices, dry weather limiting hydro power generation and delays in commissioning the 1.6 gigawatt Olikluoto 3 nuclear plant.
Finland’s power system is fully liberalized and in line with EU standards. The country has a competitive power market, as well as an open retail market. Any licensed company is allowed to own generation assets or to sell electricity to consumers.
The generation mix is dominated by hydro, nuclear and combined heat and power (CHP) plants. The CHP plants are mainly fueled by biomass and waste, with coal and peat making up a smaller share of the fuel mix. These plants supply Finland’s many district heating networks, as well as the power system. The share of wind generation has grown rapidly, from around 3% in 2015 to 12% in 2020.
Some 141 new wind farms were commissioned in Finland during 2021. Around 1.6 gigawatts (GW) of subsidy-free wind farms are either in the pipeline or newly commissioned, as 14 corporate power purchase agreements (PPAs) have been signed between 2015 and mid-2022. Utility-scale solar has not taken off, but distributed solar capacity reached 400 megawatts (MW) in 2021. Distributed solar capacity grew by 100 megawatts over 2021, as legislative changes introduced in early 2021 are making solar more attractive for blocks of flats.
Installed Capacity (in MW)
Electricity Generation (in GWh)
Which segments of the power sector are open to private participation?
Wholesale power market
Does the country have a wholesale power market?
Doing business and barriers
There are no substantial barriers to developing renewable energy projects in Finland. Similar to many other EU countries, securing a permit for building onshore wind farms can sometimes be challenging due to local opposition. However, this issue can largely be avoided due to the availability of large, sparsely populated areas and a far smaller wind power fleet.
Fossil fuel generators must pay for their emissions under the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, which covers all large combustion facilities in the region.
Currency of PPAs
Are PPAs (eg. corporate PPAs and all other types) signed in or indexed to U.S. Dollars or Euro?
Bilateral power contracts
Can a C&I (Commercial and Industrial) customer sign a long-term contract (PPA) for clean energy?
Fossil fuel price distortions - Subsidies
Does the government influence the wholesale price of fossil fuel (used by thermal power plants) down through subsidies?
Fossil fuel price distortions - Taxes
Does the government influence the wholesale price of fossil fuel (used by thermal power plants) up through taxes or carbon prices?
Plug-in-hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) and to a lesser extent battery electric vehicles (BEV) increased in popularity in Finland between 2016 and 2021. In 2016, PHEV and BEV sales together made up only 1% of new passenger car sales, which had risen to 31% in 2021.
Finland is aiming for 30% of final energy consumption in the transport sector to be from renewable sources by 2030. As part of this, it has set a target for 250,000 electric vehicles (EVs) to be on the road by 2030, which represents 6% of Finland’s passenger car fleet of 3.6 million. In 2021, close to 100,000 EVs and PHEVs made up 4% of Finland’s vehicle fleet. According to the Finnish ministerial working group, 700,000 EVs are needed on Finland’s roads by 2030 to meet the country’s 2035 carbon neutrality target. However, increased use of biofuels could also help achieve the country’s renewable energy in transport target.
Finland’s tax regime favors low-emission vehicles, as the purchase tax is determined by the CO2 intensity of the vehicle. The purchase tax is charged in addition to value added tax and can be as high as 30% of the purchase price for cars with emissions over 200 grams of CO2 per kilometer. That compares to just 2.7% for BEVs.
There are also subsidies on offer to encourage EV adoption and the installation of chargers. Between 2018 and 2022, private individuals can benefit from a grant of €2,000 when buying a fully electric car. The scheme is set to end in March 2023. Meanwhile, housing associations managing multi-family buildings can receive support for 35% of the installation cost for EV chargers, up to a maximum of €90,000 through the ARA scheme. Public charging infrastructure was eligible for assistance through a tender scheme running from 2018 to 2022.
Fuel economy standards
Does the country have a fuel economy standard in place?
Finland has implemented EU legislation on energy efficiency in buildings. Under the EU’s energy and climate target, member states have committed to increase the share of renewables supplying heating and cooling energy consumption by 1.1-1.3 percentage points each year until 2030.
In line with the EU directive for energy efficiency in buildings, minimum energy standards apply for new buildings in Finland as well as any existing buildings undergoing large renovations. In addition, Finland's 2015 Climate Change Act sets a legal framework for reducing emissions from buildings and heating. The law was set to be updated in January 2022. Finland has a long-term renovation strategy aiming at decarbonizing all buildings by 2050.
Energy efficiency policy
Does the country have a national energy efficiency plan?
Energy efficiency policy
Are there minimum energy performance standards for buildings?
Energy efficiency incentives
Is there access to loans or grants for energy efficiency measures (i.e. Wall or loft insulation or double glazing)?
There is financial support available for upgrading the heating system of buildings to clean alternatives. Finland has a scheme for scrapping oil boilers in residential homes with support of up to €4,000. A grant of up to €6,000, or 50% of the investment cost, is also available for energy efficiency renovations in residential buildings, and this can be used for heat pumps. A separate grant scheme for heat pumps is available for commercial entities, supporting up to 15% of the cost of installation, or up to 25% if the investment is procured from an energy service company.
As of March 2022, ARA support is available also for switching from gas heating to fossil-free heat sources such as bioenergy or heat pumps.