The case for CSR/ Sustainability Reporting Done Responsibly


Insights on how you can protect the environment, maintain and increase the value of your company, through a structured process.

Insights on how you can protect the environment, maintain and increase the value of your company, through a structured process.

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Case study: How Fortum promotes sustainable energy production

As a leading clean-energy company developing and offering solutions for its customers in electricity, heating and cooling, including solutions to improve resource efficiency and services for the power generation industry, Fortum aims to provide customers with environmentally benign products and services, while continuously reducing the environmental impacts of its operations.  Tweet This!

This case study is based on the 2016 Sustainability Report by Fortum published on the Global Reporting Initiative Sustainability Disclosure Database that can be found at this link. Through all case studies we aim to demonstrate what CSR/ ESG/ sustainability reporting done responsibly means. Essentially, it means: a) identifying a company’s most important impacts on the environment, economy and society, and b) measuring, managing and changing.

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Fortum’s know-how in carbon dioxide-free hydro and nuclear power production, as well as in energy-efficient combined heat and power production, along with investments in solar and wind power and solutions for sustainable cities, play a key part in the company’s environmental responsibility efforts. In order to promote sustainable energy production Fortum took action to:

  • enhance its energy-efficient production capacity
  • produce energy from waste
  • invest in solar and wind energy

What are the material issues the company has identified?

In its 2016 Sustainability Report Fortum identified a range of material issues, such as customer satisfaction, business ethics and compliance, secure supply of heat and electricity, long-term value and growth, operational and occupational safety. Among these, promoting sustainable energy production stands out as a key material issue for Fortum.

Stakeholder engagement in accordance with the GRI Standards

The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) defines the Principle of Stakeholder Inclusiveness when identifying material issues (or a company’s most important impacts) as follows:

“The reporting organization shall identify its stakeholders, and explain how it has responded to their reasonable expectations and interests.”

Stakeholders must be consulted in the process of identifying a company’s most important impacts and their reasonable expectations and interests must be taken into account. This is an important cornerstone for CSR / sustainability reporting done responsibly.

Key stakeholder groups Fortum engages with:

Stakeholder Group
Lenders and shareholders
Service and goods suppliers
Authorities and decision makers
Energy sector organisations
Non-governmental organisations
Local communities

How stakeholder engagement was made to identify material issues

To identify and prioritise material topics Fortum carried out a sustainability survey among 2,133 stakeholder representatives, representing decision makers, organisations, employees and the general public.

What actions were taken by Fortum to promote sustainable energy production?

In its 2016 Sustainability Report Fortum reports that it took the following actions for promoting sustainable energy production:

  • Enhancing Fortum’s energy-efficient production capacity
  • In March 2016, Fortum’s second new CHP (combined heat and power) unit at the Chelyabinsk GRES power plant In Russia was completed. Fuelled by natural gas, the unit’s electricity production capacity is 248 MW and its heat production capacity is 174 MW. In addition, construction of the new multi-fuel CHP plant in Zabrze, Poland continued, with the plant scheduled for completion in 2018.
 In Russia and Poland, Fortum made investments that will improve the efficiency of electricity and heat production and will reduce carbon dioxide and other emissions form produced energy. Moreover, refurbishments of hydropower plants in Sweden and Finland introduced 9 .5 MW of new, renewable electricity production capacity.
  • Producing energy from waste
  • In August 2016, Fortum acquired the Nordic circular economy company Ekokem Corporation. Fortum’s new circular economy business specialises in waste and material treatment, recycling and combustion, final disposal solutions, soil remediation and environmental construction services, and runs hazardous waste treatment and combustion facilities in Finland, Sweden and Denmark. Accordingly, the waste-to-electricity capacity in Riihimäki, Finland, is 18 MW and the heat production capacity 90 MW, in Kumla, Sweden, 9 MW and 35 MW respectively and in Nyborg, Denmark, 16 MW and 19 MW.
  • Investing in solar and wind energy
  • In 2016, Fortum launched two solar energy projects in India, the 70-MW Bhadla solar power plant in Rajasthan and the 100-MW Pavagada solar power plant in Karnataka. In addition, in the Nordic countries, Fortum has been offering its customers solar energy kits. During 2016, Fortum has also been investing actively in wind power. At the Blaiken wind farm, 22 .5 MW of capacity was commissioned, with Fortum’s share of ownership standing at 3 .4 MW.

Which GRI Standards and corresponding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have been addressed?

The GRI Standard addressed in this case is:

Disclosure 302-1 Energy consumption within the organization

Disclosure 302-1 Energy consumption within the organization corresponds to:


80% of the world’s 250 largest companies report in accordance with the GRI Standards

SustainCase was primarily created to demonstrate, through case studies, the importance of dealing with a company’s most important impacts in a structured way, with use of the GRI Standards. To show how today’s best-run companies are achieving economic, social and environmental success – and how you can too.

Research by well-recognised institutions is clearly proving that responsible companies can look to the future with optimism.

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1) This case study is based on published information by Fortum, located at the link below. For the sake of readability, we did not use brackets or ellipses. However, we made sure that the extra or missing words did not change the report’s meaning. If you would like to quote these written sources from the original, please revert to the original on the Global Reporting Initiative’s Sustainability Disclosure Database at the link:




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