Climate actions took off in 2019

News 2019-12-18 at 11:49
Laura Saikku © Luukas Myller / SYKE

Aiming towards carbon neutral municipalities and regions in the Canemure project took of in the year 2019. Seven regions, 14 sub-projects and national expert platform will implement climate action yet another five years.

Concrete actions

During 2019, all the 14 concrete actions of Canemure took off. In the actions, background reports were made, pilots were prepared, pilot sites were selected, procurements were made, measurement points were installed and field measurements were conducted. At Tampere, sustainable travel modes were tested in pilots with electric and folding bikes. Future building fair site at Lohja delivered its new construction method guidelines, and Lappeenranta city made a large procurement related to heat storage. The city of Helsinki pioneered by examining the carbon footprint of their public procurement with the help of expert platform support. Looking forward to see the progress next year after all the sub-actions really take off and first results on the pilots become available!

Regional roadmaps to guide climate work

At every included region, North Ostrobothnia, Pirkanmaa, Päijät-Häme, Satakunta, South Karelia, Southwest Finland and Uusimaa, regional cooperation groups were formed. Several occasions and seminars in each region were arranged and information on existing climate action was gathered. Regional roadmaps for climate change mitigation was the most important focus area in 2019 in the regional work. This included collecting information from the municipalities, target setting and planning for the regionally specific themes at each region. Workshops related to roadmap work will take place in 2020, after which the first versions of the roadmaps will be published.

Sharing good practices

Expert platform enhances the implementation of best practices in climate change mitigation. In 2019, energy leap service by Finnish Environment Institute SYKE for sharing best practices was developed further with the launch of its English version. Two first papers in Canemure Best practice briefs -series related to public transportation were published in cooperation by SYKE and University of Tampere. Emission reduction measures at land use sector by SYKE and Natural Resources institute Luke will be published in the beginning of 2020.

Web portal carbonneutralfinland.fi was launched in June 2019. By the end of the year 2019, the Finnish site contained information on public procurement, funding opportunities and information on interesting projects in the field of climate change mitigation. Advise for consumers was provided through promoting the previously developed www.climatediet.fi tool by SYKE.

Several presentations were given in different seminars and events. Networking and dissemination also internationally is essential in any Life project. I attended an interesting Building Platform in Brussels in June. We also exchanged information and ideas with a Slovenian project Life IP care4climate in Ljubljana in November.

Towards coherent and detailed emissions accounting

Experts of Syke developed greenhouse gas assessment methodology and calculated the emissions of municipalities with the funding of Canemure and from the Ministry of Environment. The results for all the municipalities in Finland will be published online in January 2020. The work to implement regional environmentally-extended input-output model to evaluate the economic impacts of the planned climate actions also took place. Also, several municipality-level indicators related to renewable energy and mobility were collected and analysed. Emission reductions and expansion of renewable energy capacity of the ‘Hinku’ forerunner municipalities were analysed. Also, the success stories and bottlenecks in climate change mitigation of the forerunner municipalities were investigated with 40 in-depth interviews. Findings will be reported by spring 2020.

Supporting forerunners

Expert platform supports and coordinates the regional work, but also supports the work at the municipal level, namely, that of Hinku-network. Even 26 new municipalities joined the network in 2019, with total 70 in 18 December 2019! This means that over 30 % of the Finnish population now live in a municipality that have committed to reduce emissions by -80% until 2030 (from 2007 level).There is a strong will to mitigate climate change and within the next five years we will work hard on our part to direct the motivation into action!

Project Manager, Senior Research Scientist Laura Saikku