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Mielenosoittaja pitelee kylttiä

Among the statements that should be examined are those of Greta Thunberg, climate activist, and Riikka Purra, chair of Finns Party.

Photo taken at the Elokapina demonstration held in Helsinki on December 11, 2021. Image: Antti Haanpää / Yle

Fake news is rapidly spreading and opinions about the climate crisis are often more important than facts. Fact-checking can help educate the public and to examine public figures.

Yle has therefore fact-checked a range of statements about climate change made in public by activists, politicians, pressure groups, and other organisations.

Each of the statements were rated true, false, or ‘in between’. This means that they were neither completely true nor false.

Only statements that contain verifiable information were eligible to be fact-checked.

The climate policy debate is getting more attention from all political parties. With county elections just around the corner, be sure to check out Yle’s really simple Guide Finland’s 2022 County Council Elections are now open. Keep an eye out for the forthcoming election compass in English, which will soon be available.

Thunberg: Paris Accord talks but does not take any action

Statement: “The harsh reality is that they have done virtually nothing except to talk, debate and set vague, distant future goals and targets for the years ahead,” climate activist Greta ThunbergShe said this in a video she posted to Instagram September 22 (siirryt toiseen palveluun).

Explanation: Countries have taken some actions to meet the Paris Climate Agreement goal to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. The implementation of policies is still lacking. The Gambia is the only country that has reached the Paris Agreement’s targets.

Climate Action Tracker, an analyst group, and pressure group, believes that warming prognostics are showing a slight slowdown in global average temperature rise, from +2.7 degrees Celsius up to +2.4 degrees by the end century.

The story continues after the photo.

Greta Thunberg, climate activistImage: Robert Perry / EPA

The watchdog’s latest however Report (siirryt toiseen palveluun)The report reveals that even with all the new Glasgow pledges for 2030 we will emit approximately twice as much in 2030 than is required for 1.5 degrees Celsius,” and that “all governments must reconsider their targets.”

Purra – Climate policies will be a burden on Finnish wallets

Statement: “Finland’s climate policies will see a rise gas and living costs as well as food and other forms of commuting costs, enterprise and manufacturing costs,” stated the leader of Finns Party. Riikka PurraIn a press statement dated October 12, it was stated.

Rating: In-between. It’s neither true nor false.

Explanation. Prices are unlikely to rise as a direct result government’s climate policy. Marita LaukkanenYle was informed by the VATT Institute for Economic Research.

Laukkanen said that while driving costs are expected to rise in the near term, they will only be marginally. He also noted that it is mostly Helsinki residents who will likely see an increase in heating and housing costs.

Evidence linking climate action and food price increases is still lacking. The impact of climate policies also on other modes of transportation is not clear. For entrepreneurs, the government seeks to offset the climate policy’s costs by offering compensations such a drop in the electricity tax to an amount that is within EU regulations.

Kalmari: Carbon sequestration alone does not justify banning clearcut logging

Statement: “There is no sufficient reason to prohibit clearcutting from either a wood production perspective or a carbon sequestration standpoint,” chair of Parliament’s Agriculture and Forestry Committee Anne Kalmari(Cen) During a plenary Debate (siirryt toiseen palveluun)The felling method is on 14 November.

Explanation: Accordingly to the Forestry Professor Heli PeltolaClearcutting and continuous forest growth all have the potential to capture and store atmospheric CO2, a process called carbon sequestration.

According to Professor at the University of Eastern Finland, Kalmari’s statement does not address carbon sequestration. However, the function of forests to act as carbon sinks, which refers the amount of carbon that forests have already stored, is far more important in this debate.

A young, growing forest usually deposits more carbon than an older forest. However, the carbon stock of older forests can be significantly lower than that of younger forests. A forest is considered a carbon sink if it binds more carbon to the soil than is released through logging and decay. Peltola says that the carbon sequestration is low in young forests, and that carbon is released immediately after clearcutting.

However, it will be absorbed once again in 10 to fifteen years, when the forest becomes a carbon sink.

However, the most important environmental aspect is how much carbon is already stored within the forests. According to Finnish Environment Institute researcher Sampo SoimakallioThe less a forest is felled, it will accumulate and store more carbon. The researcher explained that most of the carbon stored in felled trees will be released into the air because of the Finnish processing methods. This means that the trees’ carbon sink function is lost.

The story continues after the photo.

2020 clearcut forest in Democratic Republic of Kongo. Deforestation has a negative environmental impact and increases the risk of people coming into contact with infectious diseases.Image: Hugh Kinsella Cunningham / Pulitzer Center / EPA

Elokapina: It is not enough to transition to a “greener” way of eating.

Statement: “Green growth is not an option if we want to avoid a climate disaster.” It is not enough to alter our consumption patterns, we must start consuming less,” Extinction Rebellion, the Finnish branch of the global environmental group Extinction Rebellion. Elokapina(Written in an Instagram Post (siirryt toiseen palveluun)This was made on October 7.

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Rating: In-between. It’s neither true nor false.

Explanation: This statement is closely related to the global inequality between economically advanced and less developed countries. A world that consumed the same amount as developed countries would be unlikely to sustain the planet, regardless of how greener the consumption.

Expert from Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE). Jyri SeppäläIt is true that the transition to a circular economy, which means reusing goods and resources as much as possible, would be a huge goal. However, the risk analyst says that recycling natural resources requires a lot of energy. Therefore, the big question right now is whether we have enough time for zero-emission energy production.

While Seppälä says that Elokapina’s statement is largely true, he disagrees that more sustainable consumption would not be a good thing, adding that supporting businesses and services that promote the transition to low emissions is better than pushing consumption down completely.

HS: Elokapina may be doing more harm than good by her civil disobedience

Statement: “The methods chosen Elokapina may be not necessarily inspiring the desired change but rather generate new divisions among society which could help climate counter-movements,” Helsingin Sanomat Finland’s largest circulation daily Submitted (siirryt toiseen palveluun)September 28.

Explanation. Studies show that climate protests have the potential to change public and policy-makers’ attitudes towards climate. According to a Finnish researcher who studied climate protests, the scientific community is unanimously of the belief that activism is a good way to combat climate changes. Janne M. KorhonenIt was also noted that activism has had statistically linked correlations with the lowering greenhouse gas emissions.

An American Study (siirryt toiseen palveluun)Submitted by Janet SwimA working group established after the 2017 US protests on climate showed that activism doesn’t necessarily increase polarisation but rather reduces inequality and gives people hope that the climate crisis will be solved.

The story continues after the photo.

Photographs of Elokapina performers taken February 20, 2021 Image: Toni Määttä / Yle

Harjanne: The focus on energy efficiency is at a cost of a transition to low-carbon.

Statement: “While energy efficiency can be an important tool for combating climate change, it should not overemphasized or relied too heavily on.” At worst, focusing too much on efficient energy use could hinder efforts to transition to low-carbon energy sources. Green MP Atte HarjanneThis was said on October 18.

Rating: In-between. It’s neither true nor false.

Explanation: According to VTT chief researcher, energy efficiency plays a significant role in climate change mitigation Antti Arasto. However, it is unlikely that efficient energy use will lead to zero emission. This is why a shift away is needed. Arasto says that merely drawing attention to the efficiency of both high and low carbon energy use does not stop the transition to low-carbon energies.

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