Finland joins several transport declarations in Glasgow – pledges urge countries to decarbonise road, sea and air transport
Finland participates in six transport initiatives adopted at the Glasgow Climate Change Conference. Countries commit to reducing emissions on the road, at sea and in the air. Most of these statements were released on Transport Day on November 10, 2021.
Transport is not on the official agenda of the Climate Change Conference but, on the initiative of the UK Presidency in particular, countries have also agreed on several transport initiatives. This means that the transport sector now has a more visible role than at previous conferences.
âThe statements send a clear message that a growing number of countries intend to phase out fossil fuels, whether in road, sea or air transport. The Glasgow commitments are very much in line with Finland’s ambitious climate targets. The declarations strengthen Finland’s role as a high-tech country developing climate-friendly solutions for transport, âsaid Minister of Transport and Communications Timo Harakka.
âEmissions reductions in the transport sector are essential to achieve the 1.5 degree target. The declarations will stimulate international climate policy, as well as national actions. Finland considers it very important that we find the means to achieve carbon-free shipping because in practice we can say that Finland is an island â, said Minister of Environment and Climate Change . Krista mikkonen said.
New zero-emission cars and vans by 2035
A Declaration on Zero Emission Vehicles was also issued at the Climate Change Conference. Signatories, including Finland, pledge to promote the goal that all passenger cars and vans on sale will be zero-emission by 2035 or earlier. In the Declaration, a zero emission vehicle means a car or van that produces no greenhouse gas emissions from the tailpipe.
The statement is fully in line with the Fit for 55 package released by the European Commission on July 15, 2021. The Commission has proposed stricter limits for CO2 emissions from new cars and vans. In practice, this would mean that by 2035, the rational option for automakers would be to produce only zero-emission cars and vans.
30% of new zero-emission medium and heavy vehicles by 2030
Regarding medium and heavy vehicles (MHDV), countries have signed a Memorandum of Understanding. The goal is that at least 30% of sales of new MHDVs sold will be zero emission by 2030. Additionally, the goal for signatories is that all new MHDVs will be zero emission by 2040. The initiative applies to both passenger and freight transport.
In the MoU, zero emission vehicles are those that have no tailpipe emissions, i.e. electric and hydrogen vehicles. The MoU will support the development of the Finnish battery and electric vehicle cluster. Progress towards the target will be monitored on an annual basis.
Finland has also joined the initiative on charging infrastructure for electric vehicles in road transport, where signatories pledge to speed up infrastructure construction. Charging infrastructure is a key condition for the electrification of the transport sector and for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.
Nationally, biogas has also been identified as an important energy source as we aim to phase out fossil fuels in road transport. When life cycle emissions are taken into account, biogas is a climate-friendly option that also promotes the circular economy.
Zero carbon maritime routes for maritime transport
The Clydebank statement encourages us to undertake pioneering work in developing zero-emission shipping lanes, green shipping lanes, to set an example for the world. The statement was named after a Scottish port and a shipyard town.
States can identify potential sea routes and, together with ports and shipping companies, develop innovative model solutions for the public and private sectors. The declaration aims to support the emission reduction efforts of the International Maritime Organization IMO and to prove that some shipping routes can be operated completely free of fossil fuels in the coming years.
Finland does not yet have carbon-free shipping routes. The use of biofuels and biofuel blends in ships is growing and hybrid solutions have been introduced when ships are partly powered by electricity. In addition, we have ferry routes in Finland where there is potential for more extensive electrification.
Finland is also participating in a declaration initiated by Denmark which aims for zero-emission shipping by 2050. The decision to introduce a similar and stricter target for the International Maritime Organization is to be negotiated during the committee session. of the IMO marine environment protection program at the end of November. .
Zero net emissions in aviation by 2050
In line with the EU common position, Finland supports the declaration which strengthens efforts to reduce CO2 emissions from aviation at a certain pace. According to the Declaration, the target is for the aviation net CO2 emission target to be met by 2050. The target will help keep the global average temperature increase at 1.5 degrees. The Declaration recognizes the role of the International Civil Aviation Organization ICAO as an appropriate forum to promote the achievement of the goal. The efforts to be made include ensuring that the CORSIA carbon offset and reduction program for international aviation is as effective as possible. The ICAO Assembly in 2022 is a key milestone. Through the Declaration, countries also commit to developing and deploying sustainable aviation fuels.
Source: Ministry of Transport and Communications and Ministry of the Environment