Wednesday’s magazines: NATO hurdles, protein from the air and aging icebreakers

Turkey’s roadblock to Finland and Sweden’s membership have been in the news all week. Diplomats from the two Nordic countries are expected to meet with a Turkish delegation in to discuss Turkey’s concerns and demands on Wednesday.

However, Turkey is not necessarily the only obstacle to Finland’s and Sweden’s accession to NATO. According to the new Finland.

The publication spoke with two diplomats, Hannu HimanenFormer Finnish Ambassador to Russia and Jaakko IloniemiFormer Finnish Ambassador to the United States.

Both diplomats described the situation in Turkey in detail and explained the issues raised in Finland and Sweden about Kurdish militants and Turkey’s demands for US aircraft. The ambassadors said it was likely that issues with Turkey would be resolved at the NATO summit in Madrid in late June.

The ambassadors also pointed out that there is a possibility that problems could arise with the US Congress as the by-elections approach. Although the war in has brought foreign policy to the forefront of U.S. policy, it may quickly become more domestic.

"There is a danger that if [the Senate vote on Finland and Sweden's Nato membership] doesn’t come until August and drifts into the fall that the Senate agenda is too blocked before the by-elections – more attractive things more related to the election. If it goes beyond the middle, we are in a difficult situation," Former US Ambassador Himanen told New Finland.

Air-based ?

Swedish daily Hufvudsbladet published an article on a Finnish startup, according to which it can produce protein – rich food using only , hydrogen and microbes. "protein from the air."

Solar Foods has argued that its innovation separates food production from agriculture and means that food can be produced in the most remote environments – the desert, the Arctic and even space.

With the help of bioreactors, the microbe grows and divides to form a cloudy mass. This is then dried to a powder with a protein content of 65% and the rest are carbohydrates, fats and minerals.

After receiving a total investment of EUR 35 million, Solar Foods also announced on Tuesday that it had received a EUR 15 million from Danske Bank Growth. Solar Foods has planned to build a factory in and this is the last piece of the puzzle, the company’s CEO and founder Pasi Vainikka told HBL.

The company plans to launch its product over the next two years and is still awaiting EU approval, which it applied for in October 2021.

Icebreaker replacements

Business every day Kauppalehti The group said that a group of 20 representatives from Finnish and Swedish companies, and institutions met at the Finnish ambassador’s residence in Stockholm on Tuesday to discuss the new icebreakers.

The topic was also on the agenda during the Finnish President state visit to Sweden, but was overshadowed by a joint NATO declaration.

The business interest group hoped that the Finnish and Swedish governments would make a quick decision on the acquisition of five new icebreakers. Most of such ships in the Finnish fleet are about 50 years old and their technology is outdated and no longer meets the requirements of today’s world.

In order to reduce emissions, more and more large cargo ships with lower relative thrust are entering ports in the . These vessels require a 32-meter-wide ice-free fairway, while existing icebreakers are only 26 meters wide.

The Nextb Icebreakers team has been pushing this project forward for the past two years. Finnish companies such as Wärtsilä, Rauma Marine Construction and ABB Finland are all part of this group, which lobbies the Finnish and Swedish governments.

The plans have been submitted and KL wrote that the last step before starting the project is the approval of the Finnish and Swedish governments.

The purchase model presented by the Nextgen Icebreaker Group suggests that Sweden will buy three new icebreakers and Finland two, possibly also in Estonia.

It is also a question of modernizing its U.S. icebreaker fleet, which the newspaper has long been renovating. However, this decision is more political because certain exceptions must be made because state ships are required by law to build in the United States. Former President of the United States Donald Trump had authorized the Coast Guard to enter into an agreement with Finland, but the project was rejected after his resignation.

Rising electricity prices are hitting drivers

The rise in the price of petrol has hurt many drivers and Helsingin sanomat newspaper wrote that the high price of electricity can also damage the pockets of more and more drivers.

According to HS, the high price of electricity significantly increases the cost of living and increases the costs for many households.

Since 2018, the price of electricity in Finland has risen considerably, from less than 4 cents per kilowatt hour to 20 cents per kilowatt hour in 2022.

Prices for public charging are flat this year across Finland – 20 cents per kilowatt hour for basic charging and up to 30 cents per kilowatt hour for fast charging.

With an average electric car consuming 20 kilowatt hours per 100 kilometers and an average annual mileage of 18,000 kilometers, an electric car would consume about 3,600 kilowatt hours per year.

At the lowest public price, 20 cents per kilowatt hour, the annual cost of driving an electric car for 18,000 km would be € 720.

Compared to petrol cars, the average price has been € 2.10 per liter and driving 18,000 kilometers a year would cost the car around € 1,962 a year.

HS stated that driving an electric car is still cheaper in terms of mileage than petrol, but as the price of electricity rises, the gap between the two may narrow.

Source: The Nordic Page

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