The government must emphasize that it must have the political determination to make decisions on significant, large-scale emission reduction measures. The goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2035 should only be an intermediate goal on the road to carbon negative in the 2040s, which means that forests and other carbon sinks should sequester more carbon from the atmosphere than is emitted.
VTT has estimated that the decisions made so far are not enough to achieve even carbon neutrality, and the country’s net emissions are forecast to remain at around 16 million tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2035.
While the goals of carbon neutrality and carbon negativity are both achievable, determined action is needed, Sitra underlined.
One of the biggest obstacles is that the long-term outlook for regulation remains unclear for companies and investors, which hampers investment. Sitra argued that the outlook should be sharpened by adopting climate budgets and setting strong targets for emissions and carbon sequestration for 2040 and 2050.
“Emissions must be reduced in all areas and all parties must work together. A clear outlook allows for a predictable, cost-effective and fair transition. ” said Mariko Landström, Sitra ‘s research expert.
Agriculture has long been a branch of national climate policy, and industrial emissions have not fallen in 15 years.
Landström said According to Helsingin Sanomat, the reason for the lack of progress is obvious. “Agriculture has failed to reduce its emissions because there are no incentives,” he commented.
According to Sitra, the government could produce quick results by eliminating environmentally harmful incentives. For example, agricultural subsidies currently encourage the cultivation of peatlands, which account for more than 50% of annual agricultural emissions. Misdirected support mechanisms in terms of climate objectives guide farmers to continue to grow low-yield fields. from a perspective, a better option would be to rehabilitate and afforest the field.
Sitra rightly proposes that incentives be created for agricultural producers and forest owners to sequester carbon. Incentives are also needed to ensure that new technologies are developed to sequester and store carbon from the atmosphere.
Transport emissions, 95% of which are due to road transport, have been another major controversy, and all proposals to increase fuel taxes are facing a strong headwind. Sitra estimates that emissions from transport could be reduced by reviewing fees, taxes and subsidies by replacing emission control measures with tax breaks in other areas.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: The Nordic Page