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Roadmap Towards Oil-Free and Low-Carbon North Karelia 2040

Roadmap Towards Oil-Free and Low-Carbon Area 2040 is based on Energy and Climate Programme of North Karelia 2020. Main sectors for the roadmap are: Energy, Transport, Land-Use, Natural resources and bioeconomy, Circular economy, Innovations and know-how. Work was inducted in several workshops involving several stakeholders.

North Karelia’s Climate and Energy Programme was adopted in 2012. It laid out the targets for reducing GHG emissions and raising awareness about climate change, sustainable growth of bioeconomy sector and increasing the share of renewable energy. The purpose of the roadmap was to collect and suggest tangible steps that are to be taken to reach the set targets. The roadmap is part of implementation of Fossil Oil Free North Karelia –project and contributes to a Regional Action plan that is being drafted in BIO4ECO project.

Roadmap works as an implementation plan for the Climate and Energy Programme of North Karelia 2020. It is a new kind of regional policy with more concrete actions. Most important stakeholders in the area were involved in the process and they will be the main actors with implementation of these actions. 2-3 interesting pilotings based on the roadmap has been launched through this project.

Roadmap report in Finnish and English summaries can be found from these links:

Roadmap Report in Finnish

Summary in English (short version)

Summary in English (long version)

Roadmap as a good practise on S3 Platform in the field of energy

In English

North Karelia Towards Fossil Oil-Free and Low-Carbon Region

North Karelia is the first region in Finland to apply for a membership in the Carbon Neutral Municipalities (CANEMU, HINKU in Finnish) network. Resource efficiency, low-carbon society and bioeconomy are central themes in regional strategies. The long-term goal is to turn North Karelia into a carbon neutral and over self-sufficient region in renewable energy production where fossil oil is no longer used in energy production.

Net reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 80 %

  • HINKU municipalities aim to reduce ghg-emissions by 80 % from 2007 level until 2030 inside the municipalities borders
  • HINKU brings municipalities, businesses, citizens and experts together to create and carry out solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
  • The project aims to create solutions that have economic and social benefits as well as environmental advantages.

In North Karelia nine out of thirteen municipalities have joined HINKU network.

HINKU municipalities altogether have reduced greenhouse gas emissions -29 % from 2007 until 2015. In North Karelia greenhouse gasses have reduced -27 % at the same time period. Lots of work has been done with replacement of fossil oil in energy production and in the future actions must be directed to transportation sector. Road transportation produces a quarter of the greenhouse gasses in the area.

North Karelia's Commitment on Sustainable Development

North Karelia Towards Oil-Free and Low-Carbon Region –project

Regional Council of North Karelia together with Finnish Environment Institute has started a project North Karelia towards oil-free and low-carbon region which aims to reinforce the forerunner status of North Karelian municipalities and SMEs in introducing energy efficient, renewable energy, low-carbon and cleantech solutions. Improvement of energy efficiency and increasing the use of renewable energy in municipalities strengthens pioneer markets for development of entrepreneurship in the industry at a regional level.

Locally – Renewably – Efficiently - Climate and Energy Program of North Karelia 2020

The Climate and Energy Programme of North Karelia presents a plan of action for the North Karelia region on climate change mitigation and adaptation. The strengths of North Karelia are its rich natural resources and diverse expertise in the bioenergy and forestry research sectors. In terms of energy self-sufficiency and the share of renewable energy, North Karelia already exceeds the EU and national climate targets. Climate change and the challenges it poses are seen as a possibility for the North Karelia region to develop innovations and new business opportunities. The programme focuses on the sectors of energy production and consumption, transport, community structure and land use planning, construction, waste management, agriculture and forestry.

Forests and forestland in North Karelia absorbs a total of 3 million tonnes of greenhouse gases. About 84 % of the total land area of the region is covered in forests, of which one third is swamp. The forests of North Karelia are a large carbon sink and the role of forests on the carbon balance of the region is important. Maintaining the current forest area is crucial for the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions.

English summary of the climate and energy programme

Abandonment of fossil oil used for heating by the year 2020

Fossil oil that is used for heating will be replaced with renewable energy sources by 2020. This will be achieved by either replacing the fossil oil that is currently used for oil heating systems with bio-oil or by investing in alternative heating systems. Already now, practically all municipal centers and the largest population centers in the region are heated by district heat that is mainly generated by wood energy. However, oil is used in the production of district heat to smoothen consumption peaks and during maintenance shutdowns. There are around 7 000 properties in North Karelia which have fossil oil as a primary source of heating.

At the moment usage of fossil oil for heating is about 60 000 000 litres every year. Share of the fossil heating oil in primary energy consumption in North Karelia is 4 %. Share of the renewable energy in primary energy consumption in North Karelia is 64 %, Energy self-sufficiency 62 %. Total energy consumption (includes transportation) is around 12 000 GWh per year.

Abandonment of fossil transport fuels by the year 2030

Currently around 140 million litres of fossil fuels are used in transport in North Karelia every year.

Out of this amount some 62 million litres is petrol and around 77 million litres is diesel. These will be replaced with biofuels, biogas and electricity. In practice, the share of biofuel as a blending component will grow. Greenhouse gases from transportation are the biggest challenge for North Karelia regarding to target for net reduction of greenhouse gases.

The share of renewable energy of total energy consumption will be 100 % by 2025

In 2016 64 % of the primary energy consumption was produced with renewable energy. The aim is to become a self-sufficient region in renewable energy production (by the year 2025).

Growth in the turnover of bioeconomy

The aim is to increase the annual turnover of the bioeconomy sector in North Karelia by one billion euros by the year 2025 (compared to that of 2014, 1.7 billion €).

Forest-bioeconomy is an essential theme in the North Karelian application of smart specialisation. It is based on more innovative utilization of our forest resources.

How can we extend woods value-chain and where do we find more added value in Forest Bioeconomy sector? How can we utilize our forests more innovative and more sustainable way?

North Karelia's Smart Specialisation Strategy (draft)

Increasing the use of wood energy from 51 % to 64 % of total energy usage

The aim is to raise the share of wood energy in total energy consumption from 51 percent to 64 percent by 2020. At the same time, the objective is to increase the annual use of wood in a sustainable manner by 1 million m3 (by 2025).

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