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Photographer: Tomas Ärlemo

The environment, health and safety

Svenska kraftnät’s vision, "A leading role to ensure a secure and sustainable electricity supply", expresses our desire to work towards environmentally sound, safe and sustainable solutions. We have a great responsibility in the work to achieve the EU's climate and energy goals. We also have the responsibility to conduct our own operations in a safe manner for both people and the environment.

We contribute in meeting the EU's energy and climate goals

Svenska kraftnät has an important role in energy and climate policy, because we have the mission to develop energy-efficient and environmentally sound solutions for the transmission of electricity on the national grid.

The EU has set the goal that the share of renewable energy in the EU must be at least 27 percent in 2030. Svenska kraftnät facilitates the expansion of renewable energy by strengthening and expanding the national grid for electricity. For example, we are building new power lines to make it possible to connect new large wind farms to the national grid. That way those wind farms become part of Sweden's electricity supply.

The environment and safety are important when we build and maintain

Our operations affect people and the environment in different ways. Right now we are strengthening and expanding the national grid at several locations in the country which affects the local environment for those who live nearby. When performing construction and maintenance work there is a risk of injury to those performing the work. There is also a risk of environmental impacts such as emissions of environmentally harmful substances that can spread in the environment or affect the climate.

We coordinate the environment, occupational health and safety, electrical safety, security and quality

At Svenska kraftnät, we work in a coordinated manner with the environment, occupational health and safety, electrical safety, security and quality. Through systematic work in these areas, we can prevent injuries and environmental impacts, thus creating conditions for a sustainable national grid. Among other things, we conduct risk analyzes at an early stage of the planning process. We are also investigating the root cause of accidents and incidents in order to learn how we can avoid similar incidents in the future.

Contractors must comply with our requirements

We employ contractors to maintain and develop the national grid. To be considered for assignments with us, contractors must meet our high standards regarding the environment, occupational health and safety, electrical safety, security and quality. The requirements can be found partly in the technical guidelines and partly in the form of qualification requirements that must be met in order for contractors to qualify for procurement.

When the tasks are then implemented, we monitor the contractors to make sure they really do meet our requirements and of course that they comply with laws and other requirements. Among other things, we use audits as a tool for monitoring.

We work for environmentally sound solutions

We are committed to ensuring that the negative impact on the environment of our operations is as small as possible. To support this work, we have an environmental management system which is certified according to the standard ISO 14001. This is a tool that allows us to work effectively with environmental issues and to ensure that our operation's environmental impact continues to decline. 

Important areas are to limit the emission of greenhouse gases during operations and to reduce energy use. Among other things, we try to limit the energy losses that occur when a certain amount of the electricity transmitted through the power lines disappears into the atmosphere as heat. Other priorities are to reduce the use of health and environmentally harmful chemicals and to minimize the risks of emissions of harmful substances.

We strive to protect environmentally sensitive areas

As far as possible we also take into account environmentally sensitive areas. Among other things, we cooperate with many County Administrative Boards on specific management plans where our power lines cross Natura 2000 areas.

It has recently become known that power line corridors can have a positive impact on certain endangered plant and animal species. This applies to species that actually belong to the old agricultural landscape, but have been displaced because of today's shortage of meadows and pastures. These species have found a new habitat in the power line corridors that we keep open by clearing them of vegetation. For many years we have actively been working to promote and protect the species-rich environments in our power line corridors.