All forms of Vattenfall's energy production have impacts on local communities as well as on natural landscapes, animals, plants and ecosystems.
Undesirable impacts are mainly associated with the degradation of existing habitats for animals and plants as well as with health impairments of individuals. Natural landscapes and their inhabitants are mainly affected by the use of land or through emissions of harmful substances. Power plants and energy infrastructure can create barriers that obstruct or alter animals' natural migration patterns. Humans are also susceptible to harmful substances and especially to noise and dust emissions.
Vattenfall will strive for active consideration of local interests in various projects in order to build mutual trust through openness and involvement in local communities. Complying with local laws and regulations and taking local expectations into account, is self-evident. Safeguard biodiversity and nature through activities related to existing plants, restoration and compensation efforts, voluntary nature conservation, environmental analyses of new projects and through participation in research and development projects is a primary concern for Vattenfall.
- All operating assets and future projects will take into account and address impacts on the local community
- Vattenfall Reputation Index (VRI) score of 65 by 2020
Examples of achievements 2015
- Local acceptance for new distribution line in northern Sweden.
- In UK, Vattenfall offers a community benefit package for the 25 year life of the wind projects, which will be developed in dialogue with the local community.
- In the Netherlands, Nuon is one of the key players to combat energy poverty (people who have difficulties paying their energy bill).
- In Germany, restoration and recultivation in mining areas was continued.
Challenges we have
- Vattenfall's project management tool is including a systemic stakeholder engagement plan. At present, the coverage of the engagement plan is limited and therefore the quality and degree of stakeholder involvement may vary from project to project.
- A more proactive approach must be economically justifiable (investment of time and resources).
- Vattenfall's diversified production portfolio entails a vast number of impacts, and finding uniform ways of working across the organisation is a challenge.
- Another challenge involves finding acceptable ways of balancing local aspects against overarching climate targets, which may be the case with respect to renewable energy production.
Our planned activities
Vattenfall will continue to highlight the importance of promoting stakeholder involvement in its efforts to build trust and local acceptance.
Vattenfall will continue our efforts to identify and develop new, voluntarily protected areas. In the Nordic market the concept of ecological compensation is being developed and spread in new projects. The biodiversity programme in the hydro power operations will continue.