Ministerial Working Group on Climate and Energy Policy meets to discuss Climate Change Act reform – 2035 carbon neutrality target to be included in the Act

Press release 2019-10-23 at 9:09

The Ministerial Working Group on Climate and Energy Policy met today for its fourth meeting, which was chaired by Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Krista Mikkonen. The ministerial working group discussed the timetable for the reform of the Climate Change Act. The consultations with stakeholders and background research will begin already this autumn. The Government proposal for a revised Climate Change Act will be completed in early 2021.

“The 2035 carbon neutrality target will be enshrined in the Climate Change Act, which will provide a strong direction for our climate work. At the same time, the land use sector will be included in the Act and the Act will be strengthened. As early as next spring, our ministerial working group will outline the key guidelines for the reform. Successful climate action requires commitment from all of society. With this in mind, we will begin consultations this year with stakeholders, such as young people, businesses and non-governmental organisations,” says Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Krista Mikkonen.

The Ministry of the Environment will set up a working group for legislative drafting, which will include members from key ministries and authorities as well as from the Climate Panel. The working group will begin its work in January 2020. The reform of the Climate Change Act will be prepared openly and in active dialogue with citizens and other stakeholders.

Strengthening the Act

The current Climate Change Act provides for a climate policy planning system that is binding on the authorities. The planning system includes long-term and medium-term climate plans, along with a national climate change adaptation plan. The purpose of the plans is to ensure that international and EU climate commitments are met and that we are able to mitigate and adapt to climate change.

In line with the Government Programme, the steering power of the Climate Change Act will be strengthened. The Act will be amended in a way that will enable Finland to achieve our target of carbon neutrality by 2035. The target for 2050 will be updated and emissions reduction targets for 2030 and 2040 will be included in the Act in line with our path to carbon neutrality.

In order to achieve the objectives of the Climate Change Act, a climate and energy strategy and a climate programme for land use will be drafted, and the medium-term climate plan revised.

The Ministerial Working Group guides and directs the implementation of the Government Programme as concerns promoting the carbon neutrality target, strengthening carbon sinks and overseeing decision-making on climate and energy policy, while also taking into account social justice and international competitiveness. In addition to the Climate Change Act, the topics of the ministers’ discussions included the timetable for climate action in transport and the Helmi-programme to enhance biodiversity.

Inquiries:

Riikka Yliluoma, Special Adviser to the Minister of the Environment and Climate Change, Ministry of the Environment, tel. +358 50 414 1682, firstname.lastname@ym.fi

Outi Honkatukia, General Secretary of the Ministerial Working Group on Climate and Energy Policy, Ministry of the Environment, tel. +358 29 525 0272, firstname.lastname@ym.fi

Elina Vaara, Senior Specialist, Ministry of the Environment, tel. +358 50 572 3942, firstname.lastname@ym.fi (Climate Change Act)