Initially, the erosion of carbon sinks caused by intensive logging and the slowing down of forest growth weakens the basis of national climate policy. Greenpeace and SLL believe that the government has unlawfully neglected its duty to assess the need for additional measures and initiate a process to strengthen carbon sinks, which has jeopardized its goal of achieving carbon neutrality by 2035.
The Climate Act requires that the government must monitor the progress of climate measures and, based on the monitoring, decide on additional measures needed to achieve the goals.
The appeal starts Finland’s first climate trial. Environmental groups decided to file the complaint in an attempt to get the country to do its part to solve the biggest crisis of our time, climate change. Touko SipiläinenGreenpeace’s new Finnish country manager, compressed To Helsingin Sanomat on Monday.
“We are in a situation where the government has not followed its own climate law. The collapse of coal sinks has deprived the government of its climate plan. This threatens Finland’s goal of carbon neutrality, he said.
The petition concerns the annual climate report submitted by the government to the parliament on October 27, which calls for the decision to be revoked and the matter to be returned for further preparation. The report showed that the government is still on a narrow path to achieving net neutrality by 2035.
“Finland has adopted science-based climate goals and a climate law, the purpose of which is to ensure the achievement of the goals. We Finns can be rightly proud of these. Kaisa KosonenA Greenpeace climate expert said joint press release From Greenpeace and SLL. “Now the government has neglected its statutory obligation to monitor the realization of the goals and, if necessary, make decisions on further measures.”
“The carbon sinks in the forest and land use sector have collapsed, but an adequate quantitative assessment of the further measures required by the situation has not been made – let alone a decision to update the plan.”
He emphasized that it is crucial that the public can trust the administration’s climate promises.
The Finnish Environment Agency (Syke) and the Climate Change Panel have both demanded action to save carbon sinks after the rapid assessment published by Statistics Finland in May. The assessment showed that for the first time the land use sector has changed from a sink to a source of emissions.
This should have finally made the government take action, said SLL’s nature conservation expert Hanna Aho.
“We have taken steps backwards and drifted away from the path of carbon neutrality. We now have to restore the sinks to historic levels,” he said To Helsingin Sanomat, pointing the finger not only at the current but also previous governments for their focus on increasing the supply of wood.
The focus has remained despite the fact that scientists have long warned that increasing logging poses a risk to both the climate and biodiversity.
“Coal sinks will decide the fate of Finland’s climate policy. Prime Minister’s inaction Sanna MarinThe SDP government is in sharp conflict with the obligations of the Climate Act. The climate goals set in the law cannot be just grandiose talk, but actions must be in line with them.”
Minister of the Environment and Climate Maria Ohisalo (The Greens) saw the petition on Monday as a positive first step towards an important precedent.
“We are talking about an important precedent in many ways. On a general level, it is naturally very important that civil society puts pressure on the decision-makers in making climate policy,” he said stated For Helsingin Sanomat.
Finland is also committed to international climate goals and the statutory goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2035.
“This requires both emission reductions and adequate carbon sinks,” he said. “It is clear that we need a rescue package for carbon sinks. Climate actions in the land use sector fall under the competence of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.”
He also claimed that the government responded to preliminary information about the state of carbon sinks without delay by starting the preparation of the land use variation fee and increasing funding for climate sustainable forestry.
“We also started two investigations: one on the causes of the collapse of the sinkholes and the other on the need to renew the Forest Act,” he said.
Statistics Finland is scheduled to present its official land use statistics in December. The Natural Resources Institute (Luke) publishes its research on the causes of the collapse of carbon sinks.
“They give us a more accurate picture of the scope of the necessary measures. The board will discuss the situation in the evening class”, Ohisalo promised.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: The Nordic Page