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Citizens’ Jury publishes a statement on the fairness of climate actions

Ministry of the Environment
27.4.2021 12.00 | Published in English on 29.4.2021 at 10.19
Press release

The Citizens’ Jury convened to assess climate actions has discussed the citizens’ views and development proposals concerning the emission reduction measures. The Jury’s statement is a considered opinion of the people on how the measures could be implemented in a way that is as effective as possible while treating different people in a fair and just manner.

The Jury was commissioned by the Climate Policy Roundtable together with the Ministry of the Environment, and it was implemented by researchers of the University of Turku.

The task of the Jury was to assess the fairness and impact of the measures to be included in the new Climate Change Policy Plan and draw up a statement on the matter. The focus in the discussions was on emission reduction measures concerning housing, mobility and food that are particularly relevant for individual citizens.

The discussions were based on a list of 14 potential measures to be taken under the Climate Change Policy Plan of the Ministry of the Environment. The statement presents the Jury’s assessment of the framework conditions of the proposed measures from the perspectives of impact and fairness and proposals for new and supplementary measures.

Mitigating climate change is important but economic impacts cause concern

In the general points of the statement the Jury points out that, even if people are prepared to take action to slow down climate change, they are worried about the economic impacts that climate measures may have on them. The Jury considers it important to take individual and regional differences into account in the measures included in the plan.

Of the Jury’s members 30 voted for the statement, two cast a blank vote and one was absent. The statement as a whole is the joint opinion of the Jury, but individual members had the opportunity to express their dissenting opinion on the statement or the Jury’s work. The dissenting opinions will be collected in connection with the inquiry at the end of the Jury’s term and published in the final report.

Jury’s deliberations supported by expert knowledge

The Jury met online on 22 and 24–24 April. The members were recruited by sending an inquiry to 8,000 randomly selected Finnish citizens. From among those who volunteered, the researchers selected members to be invited to the Jury using random sampling and quotas so that different demographic groups with respect to age, gender, place of residence and level of education were represented as well as possible. Of those invited, 37 confirmed their participation and 33 persons took part in the Jury’s work from the beginning to the end.

The members of the Jury learned about the topics to be discussed from background material and presentations by experts from different fields. The Jury deliberated on the information received and different perspectives related to climate measures in small groups and joint discussions.

The Jury’s statement will be discussed at the Climate Policy Roundtable on 3 May, and the outcome of its work will be utilised in the preparation of the Medium-term Climate Change Policy Plan. The processing of the results will continue in a working group appointed to support the preparation of the plan. The draft plan should be ready in summer 2021.

The final report on the Citizens’ Jury written by the researchers will be completed in June 2021.

Inquiries:

Heta-Elena Heiskanen, Senior Specialist, Ministry of the Environment, tel. +358 295 250 380, [email protected]

Maija Setälä, Professor, University of Turku, tel. + 358 29 450 2737, [email protected]

Recordings of the presentations by experts and materials provided to the Jury are available on the Jury’s website. The materials are in Finnish.