Lumme Energia and HJK are deepening their collaboration by installing a solar power system on the roof of Bolt Arena, making it Finland's first football stadium to harness its own solar energy production.
The solar power system will be constructed by Lumme Energia's subsidiary, Solarigo Systems Oy, a leading builder of solar power systems in Finland.
The system is expected to begin generating electricity by the end of autumn in 2023.
Juho Lasonen, Project Manager at Solarigo, explains that HJK's solar power project will commence with the installation of 162 solar panels on the club end's roof.
"The energy generated by these panels would cover the annual consumption of 41 apartment units," Lasonen reveals.
Solar Power: A Step Towards Carbon Neutrality
Esko Villman, HJK's Sales Director, emphasizes that the football club's commitment to sustainability takes a significant leap as it begins utilizing its extensive roof space to produce renewable energy.
"The solar power system is the crowning achievement of our collaboration. It represents one of the largest and most visible joint projects in HJK's history, and we are immensely proud of it," Villman says.
HJK's goal is to become carbon neutral by 2025.
The solar power system marks a substantial and concrete milestone in the ongoing partnership between HJK and Lumme Energia. Their collaboration has set high standards and serves as an example to many other stakeholders.
"Lumme Energia is a partner in HJK's ambitious journey towards carbon neutrality by 2025. We have undertaken tangible actions since 2019, including calculating our carbon footprint, hosting carbon-neutral home matches, and the 'Hyvän tuulen pelaaja' (Good Mood Player) campaign," explains Johanna Viskari, Customer Experience Manager at Lumme Energia.
Viskari highlights that this unique solar power project enhances the overall energy efficiency of the arena by producing a portion of its required energy internally. During the summer months when football season is in full swing, the solar power system is expected to reduce HJK's need to purchase electricity by approximately 15%.
HJK has already been purchasing exclusively renewable energy since 2019, resulting in a zero carbon footprint for their purchased electricity.
A Carbon-Neutral Stadium Attracts Event Organizers
Aki Riihilahti, CEO of HJK, acknowledges that the football club's carbon neutrality goal is ambitious but reflects years of diligent effort. HJK has consistently implemented concrete measures to enhance its sustainability.
"The solar power system being constructed on the roof of Bolt Arena aligns perfectly with HJK's message and brand, serving as a role model for our values. Sustainability should not remain mere words on paper; together with our partners, HJK is committed to taking bold and innovative actions that will help us achieve our goal," Riihilahti asserts.
According to Esko Villman, HJK's aim is to offer all future events at Bolt Arena as carbon-neutral experiences. Environmental values are already crucial for many organizations when seeking suitable event venues.
"Event organizers can proudly communicate the sustainability of their events to their stakeholders," Villman notes.
Viskari, on the other hand, expresses Lumme Energia's pride in collaborating with the ambitious HJK.
"This is a significant project for both Lumme Energia and HJK. The solar power system has been in the planning stages for a while, and it's fantastic to see it coming to fruition."
HJK also aims to encourage other sports clubs, event organizers, and companies in the wellness sector to act responsibly and seek environmentally responsible solutions—both large, like solar power systems, and smaller changes, such as switching to renewable energy in their electricity contracts.
"Even small actions can collectively have a significant impact," Villman encourages.