Fortum and Lidl sign an agreement to utilise excess heat in the open district heating network

Date: 15/11/2018



The Lidl distribution centre in Järvenpää will produce about 700 MWh of heat annually for Fortum’s district heating network in the Järvenpää region. The amount is equivalent to the annual heating needs of more than 40 single-family homes.

“Climate change is one of the toughest challenges human kind has faced. To tackle the challenge, we are committed to our goal to fully transition to carbon-neutral district heat production during the 2020s. In the transition to a sustainable, efficient and smart energy system, we are investing particularly in production methods that are not combustion-based, methods like the use of excess heat and geothermal heat,” says Fortum’s Ilkka Toijala, Head of Heating and Cooling, Finland.

Fortum is already efficiently utilising the excess heat generated by various sources. The company has several major customers that feed the excess heat generated at their buildings and in other operations to Fortum’s open district heating network. Households connected to Fortum’s district heating networks are heated with the excess heat generated by data centres, buildings, industrial facilities, wastewater treatment plants, and logistics centres, among others. This excess heat has never before been recovered in this or any other way.

The agreement with Lidl is the first agreement signed using the public procurement prices for excess heat. “During summer we get plenty of energy from our own solar power plant, but it is also used to cool the distribution centre’s refrigerated areas. We can transfer the condensate heat generated in conjunction with the cooling into the district heating network for everyone to use; nothing gets wasted. Utilising and recycling excess heat is very much in alignment with our ambitious energy targets,” says Virpi Kaikkonen, Director of Properties and Development at Lidl Finland.