Hiilestä kiinni – Catch the carbon research and innovation programme to produce climate-sustainable land use solutions, extensive call for applications now open

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has opened an extensive call for applications for research and development funding aimed to produce information on how the climate-sustainability of agriculture, forestry and other land uses can be strengthened. The total amount of funds available is about EUR 9 million. The three-year research and innovation programme Hiilestä kiinni - Catch the carbon is one of the key elements of the package of climate measures for the land use sector under the Government Programme.

Extensive cooperation between the scientific community, business operators and other stakeholders in our society is needed to achieve the climate objectives of the land use sector. The webinar on 9 November where the programme was published and the networking event held in the same contexts attracted more than 200 researchers and other stakeholder representatives interested in the topic.

The application for funding related to the programme will be open until 21 December 2020. The aim is also to open a supplementary call for applications already in 2021.

The project applications will be evaluated in January 2021 by an evaluation panel invited for this purpose. The earliest date when the research and innovation projects can be started is 1 March 2021 and the Ministry’s funding for the projects included in this process will end no later than 31 December 2023.

Programme prepared together with scientific community and stakeholders

Besides reductions in fossil emissions, achieving the target of a carbon-neutral Finland by 2035 requires cuts in the emissions from agriculture, forestry and other land uses and maintenance and strengthening of carbon sinks and reservoirs. The net impact set as the target to 2035 for the additional measures included in the package of climate measures in the land use sector is at least 3 Mt CO2 equivalent.

The aim of the Hiilestä kiinni – Catch the carbon research and innovation programme is to produce information that anticipates changes in the operating environment on how agriculture, forestry and other land use can be targeted in a more climate-smart manner, both in the short and long term. The aim is also to strengthen the sustainable use of renewable natural resources and comprehensive sustainability.  The programme was prepared in cooperation with the scientific community and stakeholders.

New information on impact chains

Fulfilling the objectives of the Hiilestä kiinni – Catch the carbon programme requires an interdisciplinary approach and cooperation between different stakeholders, which is why applications from consortiums composed of two or several organisations will be much appreciated. In projects carried out by consortiums funding is granted to the main applicant that will then manage the contacts and financial transactions with the other organisations and the Ministry. The consortiums may also include private companies. In their applications the research consortiums should state clearly the causal chains in their project proposals that promote the achievement of the climate neutrality target to 2035.

The new programme will significantly strengthen the research related to agriculture, forestry and other land use and provide excellent opportunities to researchers from different fields of science to deepen and diversify the knowledge and competence. The programme will also link earlier research results and current and future international and national research on these topics more strongly to support decision-making.

Besides natural sciences, research is needed on people’s behaviour and attitudes to achieve true changes in the way we act. Agriculture and forestry will not become climate-smart without climate-smart farmers and forest owners. I

t is also important to promote innovation as part of research projects. Innovations may concern e.g. processes, technical solutions or new services. Under the projects, funding may also be granted to open and user-driven Living Lab activities carried out in practical operating environments.

The Research and Innovation programme contains four main themes

The themes are cross-cutting: from large systemic change (change is in the air) towards targeted regional and local changes and solutions (nudging in land use) and further by providing innovative solutions from land use processes (wisdom from soil). Cross-cutting foresight and new research on policy instruments and incentives are also required.

How and when to apply

The call for applications closes on 21 December 2020 at 4:15 pm.

Detailed information on how to apply:

Call for applications (version 2, the previous one had errors with links)

Note! This is an unofficial translation. In case of any discrepancies with the original Finnish call for applications text, the original one overrides this translation.

Swedish translation will be published during week 47.

Materials from the webinar (Finnish only)

FAQ (Finnish only)

Muualla palvelussamme

Application system (Finnish only)

Research and development in the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry

Press release 9.11.2020: Hiilestä kiinni – Catch the carbon research and innovation programme to produce climate-sustainable land use solutions, extensive call for applications now open

Press release 6.10.2020: New research and innovation programme creates solutions to climate-wise land use

Further information

Johanna Kohl, tutkimusohjelmapäällikkö 
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Luonnonvaraosasto, Luonnonvara- ja vesitalousyksikkö 0295162211  


Eeva Karjalainen, Senior Specialist 
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Tieto- ja tutkimustoimiala, Tieto- ja tutkimusyksikkö 0295162137  


Elina Nikkola, Ministerial Adviser 
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Tieto- ja tutkimustoimiala, Tieto- ja tutkimusyksikkö 0295162333  


Reetta Sorsa, Senior Adviser 
Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Luonnonvaraosasto, Luonnonvara- ja vesitalousyksikkö 0295162118