Kemijoki Oy’s pumped storage power plant project at Ailangantunturi is progressing – Environmental impact assessment programme on public display

Kemijoki Oy has submitted an environmental impact assessment (EIA) programme for the pumped storage power plant and power line project at Ailangantunturi in Kemijärvi to the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment for Lapland (ELY Centre), which acts as the coordinating authority. The project and the EIA programme will be presented at a public event in Kemijärvi on 28 May. Opinions and statements on the EIA programme can be given until 14 June.

During the spring, we have created an EIA programme for the pumped storage power plant project at Ailangantunturi. The programme is a plan outlining how the assessment of the project’s environmental impact during the construction and operational phases will be carried out. The scope of the project includes the construction of an upper storage lake on the upper part of the Ailangantunturi fell, dredging in Kuusilahti in Lake Kemijärvi, i.e., the lower storage lake, the excavation and building of tunnels and underground facilities, the construction of a 400-kilovolt power line to Fingrid’s Pirttikoski electricity substation in Autti, and the building of an electricity substation and access road.

The map shows the pumped storage power plant planned to be established at Ailangantunturi in Kemijärvi and the possible route options for the power line leading to Pirttikoski.

We work in close cooperation with the authorities. Besides the statutory EIA procedure, we established a monitoring group for the project. So far, the cities of Kemijärvi and Rovaniemi, the Kemijärvi joint property management association, Kemijärven ammattikalastajat ry (the Registered Association of Commercial Fishers of Kemijärvi), the reindeer herding cooperatives of Hirvasniemi, Pyhä-Kallio and Vanttaus, as well as the Lapland ELY Centre have been involved in the monitoring group’s work. The group is tasked with guiding the environmental impact assessment and informing our key stakeholders of the project and its progress.

The 550-megawatt pumped storage power plant at Ailangantunturi is in the preliminary planning phase. The plant could be operational in 2032 at the earliest. It would act as a hydroelectric battery that balances Finland’s power system, producing electricity when electricity demand is high or when there is a disruption in the electricity system. In such circumstances, water will be run through turbines from the upper storage lake to the lake Kemijärvi. When electricity demand is low, the pumped storage power plant will pump water back up into the upper storage lake.

“Implementing the pumped storage power plant project at Ailangantunturi promotes a safe energy transition and new industrial investments in Finland as well as boosts the economy and welfare in the region. We carry out the preliminary planning and the first EIA of a pumped storage power plant in Finland from the premise that the project has as little adverse effects as possible on other usage of the area as well as local residents and the environment,” says Erkki Huttula, Environmental Manager at Kemijoki Oy.

As a technology, pumped storage has been tried and tested, and it is widely used elsewhere in Europe. Since spring 2023, we have been exploring the possibility of constructing pumped storage power plants in Northern Finland. Apart from Ailangantunturi, Kemijoki Oy is exploring the possibility of building several pumped storage power plants of similar scale in the Kemijoki water area.

Info box: The progress of the EIA

  • On 7 May, Kemijoki Oy submitted an EIA programme concerning the pumped storage power plant at Ailangantunturi and the 400-kilovolt power line leading to Pirttikoski to the Lapland ELY Centre.
  • From 16 May to 14 June, the EIA programme can be viewed at the Lapland ELY Centre, the Sortteeri Service Point in Kemijärvi, the Kemijärvi Library, the Osviitta Service Centre in Rovaniemi and the Lappia department of Rovaniemi’s Asemakirjasto Library as well as online at
  • Opinions and statements on the EIA programme can be submitted in writing to the Lapland ELY Centre no later than 14 June: via email at or by post at Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment for Lapland, PO Box 8060, FI-96101 Rovaniemi.
  • The project and the EIA programme will be presented at an open public event in the Council Chamber of the Kemijärvi City Hall on 28 May starting from 5:00 p.m. Remote participation in the event is also possible.
  • Once the programme, natural resource inventories and other assessments have been completed, Kemijoki Oy will create an EIA report that presents an impact assessment based on natural resource inventories and other research conducted in accordance with the EIA programme.
  • The assessment of environmental impacts has already started to some extent. We will assess the impacts on, among others, surface waters and water management, soil and bedrock, groundwaters, fish stock and fishing, vegetation, wildlife and other natural assets in the area, conservation areas, reindeer husbandry, climate, air quality, and urban structure. The need for separate assessments will be determined at the hearing stage of the EIA programme.
  • We will continue our cooperation with the authorities and the monitoring group. We will also present the EIA report at a public event.
  • AFRY acts as the EIA consultant. The EIA procedure is planned to be completed during the early summer of 2025.

Additional information

Erkki Huttula
Environmental Manager
Kemijoki Oy
Phone 020 703 4431

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