Research institutes: stronger climate actions needed in the effort sharing sector
A number of research institutes have completed the assessments they were requested to make concerning the adequacy of the measures included in the daft Medium-term Climate Change Policy Plan. According to the assessments, stronger actions will be needed so that Finland can achieve its climate objectives with sufficient certainty. In its autumn budget session the Government decided that the adequacy of the measures to be included in the Climate Change Policy Plan will be evaluated in March on the basis of assessments by the ministries, the relevant research institutes and the Finnish Climate Change Panel.
The Medium-term Climate Change Policy Plan is one of the three climate plans of the Finnish Government. It describes the measures to be taken in the effort sharing sector to achieve the EU target concerning emission reductions by 2030 and the target of a carbon-neutral Finland by 2035. The effort sharing sector comprises emissions from transport, agriculture, building-specific heating, non-road mobile machinery and waste management, and F-gas emissions.
Assessments of the adequacy of the measures in the draft Climate Change Policy Plan were requested from the Finnish Climate Change Panel, Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), Natural Resources Institute Finland (Luke), Finnish Meteorological Institute and Technical Research Centre of Finland (VTT). The assessments considered the role of the agriculture and transport sectors as particularly important.
Assessments by research institutes support the feedback received in consultations
The assessments concerning the adequacy of the measures to be included in the Medium-term Climate Change Policy Plan support the feedback received in the consultations. The draft plan was circulated for comments from December to January. A total of 210 statements came in, and most of them drew attention to the adequacy of climate measures, with a particular focus on themes concerning the agriculture and transport sectors. Other themes that were commonly raised included the carbon footprint of consumption, climate work in municipalities and regions, and building-specific heating.
The matters that were considered positive in the draft plan included the broad perspective on the potential sites and operations where emission reductions can be achieved and the large number of new means included in the measures that will also promote structural changes. However, the key concern in the responses was that the uncertainties associated with the package that is composed of a large number of small-scale actions could be difficult to manage.
Ministerial Working Group on Climate and Energy Policy to decide on the package in March
The next step for the Ministerial Working Group on Climate and Energy Policy is to discuss the assessments by the research institutes and the feedback from consultations.
“The Government is committed to pursuing a science-based policy and to discussing the draft Climate Change Policy Plan on the basis of assessments by the research institutes. We will read the assessments with care and discuss the modifications that may be needed to ensure that the necessary emission reductions will be achieved, while reducing the uncertainties related to this,” says Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Emma Kari, who chairs the Ministerial Working Group.
The assessments will also be discussed at the Climate Policy Roundtable on 22 February. The Climate Policy Roundtable is chaired by the Prime Minister and it is composed of representatives of the key stakeholders: trade unions, municipalities, scientists, industrial sectors, interest groups, young people and NGOs.
The Ministerial Working Group on Climate and Energy Policy will give its opinion on the assessments concerning the adequacy of the measures in the draft Medium-term Climate Change Policy Plan by mid-March. The focus of the Ministerial Working Group in evaluating the adequacy of the measures will be on this particular plan. The other two key climate change policy plans, i.e. the Climate and Energy Strategy concerning the emissions trading sector and the climate change plan for the land use sector, will be circulated for comments later this spring. The Government will submit a proposal for the new Climate Change Act at the end of February.
Assessments by the research institutes (in Finnish):
• Finnish Climate Change Panel, inquiries: Markku Ollikainen, Chair, tel. +358 50 415 1201, [email protected]
• VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, inquiries: Tiina Koljonen, Research Team Leader, tel. +358 50 359 9549, [email protected]
• Finnish Environment Institute, inquiries: Jyri Seppälä, Professor, tel. +358 295 251 629, [email protected]
• Natural Resources Institute Finland, inquiries: Kristiina Lång, Research Professor, tel. +358 295 326 474, [email protected]
• Finnish Meteorological Institute, inquiries: Hannele Korhonen, Director of Climate Research Programme, tel. +358 295 392 135, [email protected]
Summary of the statements concerning the Medium-term Climate Change Policy Plan (In Finnish)
Special Adviser to the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change (requests for interviews with the Minister)
+358 50 599 3094
Special Adviser to the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change
tel. +358 50 414 1682
Ministry of the Environment
Senior Ministerial Adviser
tel. +358 295 250 185