Snowmen join Finnish climate bill campaign

12 February 2013

Snowmen in twelve cities around Finland encouraged the Finnish government to draft a comprehensive and strong Climate Bill today.

The action was organised by Friends of the Earth Finland / Maan Ystävät Ry which says that the Ministerial working group on energy and climate policy currently working on the draft must table a strong and ambitious Bill in the parliament instead of continuing ineffective politics behind closed doors.

Friends of the Earth Finland/ Maan Ystävät Ry is campaigning for a strong and comprehensive Climate Bill through its Big Ask campaign. A strong Bill would consist of annual carbon budgets that ensure long-term emission reductions. It would also foresee a transparent system of reporting as well as an equitable burden sharing between ministries to ensure effective emission reductions.

"It has been wonderful to see how many people all around Finland are participating in our climate campaign in today's snowmen demonstration! Several new cities got involved; the support we have got from the grassroots level is really valuable and we hope that it has also been heard among the politicians", said Leena Kontinen of Friends of the Earth Finland and the coordinator of the actions.

On February 8, the Ministerial working group on energy and climate policy decided to proceed with preparations of the Climate Bill. The group decided to include a long term emission reduction goal of -80% by 2050; a management, follow-up and reporting system of Finland's non-ETS emissions; and improved coordination between different administrative bodies. Both mitigation and adaptation actions would be coordinated under the Climate Law.

The level of ambition in emission reduction targets would not be increased from the pre-existing ones. However, it would make Finland's 2050 target legally binding for the first time.

Due to Friends of the Earth Finland's persistent campaigning, the Climate Bill has entered the legislative process. However, the contents of the current bill proposal are not fully in line with climate science.

This spring, Friends of the Earth Finland will continue lobbying and visible street actions to give impetus to the Bill preparation process and to push for higher targets.