Combined heat and power (CHP) - more efficient power generation
Combined heat and power (CHP) production is the most efficient fuel-based energy production. By producing electricity and heat you maximize the use of fuels, which is energy efficient. At the same time you lower the amount of CO2 released into the atmosphere.
Using CHP increases the efficiency of fuel use – up to 90 % of the fuels can be utilised.
The efficient CHP plants significantly reduce emissions, compared to separate production of electricity and heat.
Fuel source flexibility
The CHP plants use various energy sources, e.g. biomass and waste.
Key numbers for 2016
megawatts (MW) of production capacity
terrawatt hours (TWh) of electricity produced
share of Fortum’s total power generation
The continuous improvement of resource and energy efficiency is important in terms of the sufficiency of natural resources and climate change mitigation. CHP production addresses both of those issues because over 90% of the fuel's primary energy is used to produce district heating and electricity.
Using biomass and waste
Generating heat and power by adding carbon-neutral fuels to the mix dramatically reduces emissions. Unlike single source power and heat production with natural gas or coal, CHP with biomass and waste in the fuel mix reduces CO2 emissions by up to 40%.
CHP balances the seasonality of electricity demand with intermittent production from renewables.
FAQ - Combined Heat and Power
What is CHP?
Combined heat and power (CHP) maximises the energy efficiency by producing electricity and heat from a versatile mix of fuels in one production facility.
How does CHP work?
CHP plants capture and utilise the heat that comes from the engine during electricity generation and provides both heat and electricity in one process. Additionally during the summer months the heat generated may be used to provide cooling for air conditioning.
Where does Fortum use CHP?
We have CHP plants in Finland, Poland, Russia and the Baltic countries. Our CHP production in Sweden is done through a joint venture with the city of Stockholm called Fortum Värme. Most of our CHP plants are located in urban areas where there is a significant demand for district heating and most of the plants have an additional condenser that allows for increased electricity production in the summer when demand for heat is low.
CHP and the environment
CHP production is based on fuel combustion, so the main environmental impact is related to flue-gas emissions. To help mitigate this, flue gas cleaning technologies are used. Carbon-neutral fuels are added to the mix and advanced combustion techniques are used to reduce sulphur emissions and nitrogen oxides. CHP leaves behind ash, but up to 50% of the CHP ash in Europe is used by the construction materials industry for earthworks and to fill up mines.