Dear CLC members, partners, and supporters,

After a hectic year it is time to have some rest and enjoy Christmas.

This year, the CLC held many meetings, actions and events in Finland, and our international presence and impact grew significantly. Here are some highlights.

During the first quarter, we joined forces with the Nordic consortium, led by the Haga Initiative, which interviewed the top management of 38 Nordic companies on their climate strategies and objectives. The key result was that more than 75 per cent of the companies said they could reach net-zero GHG emissions, given the right policy environment. The report is available here.

During the second quarter, the CLC joined the Annual Meeting of the Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition led by the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund. The coalition consists of 32 national and sub-national governments, 150 leading businesses and 67 strategic partners, including the CLC. The CLC was invited to give a presentation and development proposals to the CPLC. The CLC presentation is available here.

In June, the CLC, together with Nordic businesses, the financial sector and NGOs, initiated a call on the EU and its Member States to make the European Union Paris Agreement-proof, by setting and agreeing on new, sufficiently ambitious climate targets.

The signatories urged EU leaders to:

  • Set a target for achieving net-zero emissions at the latest by 2050 or earlier taking the IPCC findings into account.
  • Based on the target, agree on a binding carbon budget for the remaining GHG emissions.
  • Revise and align the 2030 and 2040 targets with the net-zero target.

By today, over 80 organisations have signed the call, including the Confederations of Finnish and Danish Industries.

The Zero Emission Day in 21 September was the highlight of the third quarter. Many CLC members organised campaigns aimed at their customers, staff and other stakeholders, as well as initiatives with local schools.

In October, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published its Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C. The report illustrates that +2 °C will be too risky for humankind and that we should aim to keep global warming below +1.5 °C. The board of the Climate Leadership Coalition concluded that the Carbon Law concept of halving global carbon emissions every decade, first by 2030, then by 2040 and then again by 2050 and offsetting the remaining emissions via carbon sinks by 2050, sets a good framework and ambition level for mitigation actions towards the 1.5 °C target.

In October, the Office of the President of the Republic of Finland invited CLC to collaborate in finding means to reduce the carbon footprint of the Office by at least two-thirds by February 2024. The CLC was invited to the Independence Day reception on 6 December at which the environmental theme was visible.

During the last quarter, the CLC launched a campaign to reduce black carbon, with The Central Association of Chimney Sweeps, the Bioenergy Association of Finland, The Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, and The Finnish Environment Institute -Syke and co-organised a sport and climate event in Helsinki with Sport and Sustainability International and a side event at COP24 in Katowice with the Estonian government. VTT and LUT University published a guidebook to evaluate the carbon handprint of products. The project idea was developed with Carbon footprint and Handprint theme group.

In December, several CLC members joined the climate seminar convened by the Prime Minister, with 170 actors from different sectors of society. Jorma Ollila presented the proposal to agree ambitious and clear climate targets and to plan a more systemic solution for emission reductions within the EU. On 12 December, Prime Minister Juha Sipilä gave a speech in the European Council which also addressed climate issues. He demanded a 1.5 °C target and proposed carbon sinks be included in the emission trading system as one development action.

In 2018, eleven new organisational and six individual members joined the CLC. CLC joined EIT Climate-KIC, a European knowledge and innovation community, working towards a prosperous, inclusive, climate-resilient society founded on a circular, zero-carbon economy.

In 2019, CLC continue to develop the core projects: proactive procurement and citizens engagement, effective carbon pricing and nature-based climate solutions.

We will develop carbon footprint measurements into public procurement and utilise the guidelines for carbon footprint in buildings from the Ministry of the Environment when they will be published. Regarding citizens engagement, we will evaluate and develop the best practises from the Korean model. CLC office and some of our members, have developed a foundation to accelerate citizens engagement in EU. More news from this coming in January.

We will continue the development of a more systemic solution for emission reductions, improving the effectiveness of carbon pricing, within the EU. In the nature-based climate solutions, the main focus will be in developing measurement solutions for carbon sinks and storages.

And, in addition to actions mentioned above, CLC will promote the wider TCFD– and Science Based Targets (SBT) methods within our members and other interested companies. TCFD is becoming mainstream in global financial markets and SBT within companies.

We have made big steps forward and earned some time to rest. Thank you for the excellent collaboration!

On behalf of CLC I wish a relaxing and white Christmas,

Jouni Keronen

Executive Director

Climate Leadership Coalition