Side events of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry at the COP27 Climate Change Conference

During the COP27 Climate Change Conference in Sharm EL-Sheikh, Egypt, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry of Finland will organise three side events related to climate solutions in the land use sector and climate change resilient and sustainable use of peatlands. Discussions can be followed via this link.

1.    Climate solutions and energy access in rural areas

Thursday 10 November at 14.30–15.40

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, together with the Nordic Environment Finance Corporation, will organise a panel discussion on new climate solutions for the land use sector implemented in the Nordic countries and in the rural areas of Africa.

From 2020 the ‘Catch the Carbon’ package of climate measures of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has provided funding for more than 100 research, innovation and development projects. This package is an excellent example of a set of climate measures in the Nordic countries that has been funded by the public sector and that produces knowledge base and new innovative solutions for the land use sector. The projects funded from the programme also contribute to reducing carbon emissions from land use and strengthening carbon stock.

Panellist: Lotta Heikkonen, Chief Specialist for Climate Change, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.

2.    Food systems facing changes – towards resilience, sustainability and justice

Saturday 12 November at 16.30–17

Scientists participating in four ‘Catch the Carbon’ projects will discuss changes in the food system, with a main focus on climate change resilient and sustainable use of peatlands. There are peatlands in all climate zones. Peatlands are also the world’s largest terrestrial carbon stock, which means that emission reduction measures targeted to these will have major impacts, both nationally and globally.

In his keynote speech Jarno Tuominen, Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of Turku, will present the opportunities offered by climate nudge. The panellists Hanna Kekkonen and Hem Raj Bhattarai, Research Scientists at the Natural Resources Institute Finland, and Annalea Lohila, Associate Professor at the Finnish Meteorological Institute, will discuss solution to mitigating emissions and increasing carbon sinks in peatlands.

‘Catch the Carbon’ projects that participate in event:

  • Climatically sustainable use of peatlands - farmer's view, TURINA

Hanna Kekkonen, Research Scientist, Natural Resources Institute Finland

In the project, pilot areas are set up to activate farmers to implement long-term emission reduction measures. The aim of the project is to find the best possible way for each field that is also acceptable to the farmer to slow down the decomposition of peat e.g. by increasing the vegetation cover, reducing tillage, afforesting the area or raising groundwater level. It also promotes the opportunities for paludiculture and its production chains by bringing companies and farmers in the sector together. Very little use has been made of the emission reduction potential of peatland fields, even if many farmers would be willing to do more to achieve the climate targets. The surface area of peatland fields is only about 10% of the cultivated area, but the carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide emissions from these account for more than half of the total greenhouse gas emissions from Finnish agriculture. 

Project period: 2021–2023.

Funding from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry EUR 840,000.

  • CarbonNudges In Climate Wise Land Use In Agriculture and Forestry, TUIMA

Jarno Tuominen, University Lecturer and Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Turku

The project explores to what extent attitudes, background and possible structural barriers determine how successful different types of behavioural and economic nudges are and whether people’s willingness depends on regional or attitude-related factors. The project produces information for anticipating changes in the operating environment and practical solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and strengthen carbon sinks and overall sustainability in land use. By making some options easier, more topical and more attractive, people can be guided to making more of such choices without limiting their freedom of choice. The nudging takes place as an open process and in mutual understanding with landowners whose choices have impacts on emissions generated by land use. The project is multidisciplinary and phenomenon-based. Researchers in natural sciences, psychology, economics, law, and business economics and management work together to produce information based on scientific research to mitigate climate change.

Project period 2021–2023.

Funding from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry EUR 1,097,633.

  • Forest on peatlands - solutions for reducing emissions and increasing of carbon sinks, TURNEE

Annalea Lohila, Associate Professor, Finnish Meteorological Institute

The project uses new measurements and modelling to find out how much greenhouse gas emissions in the land use sector can be reduced through the treatment and location of forests growing on peatlands. The project assesses the emission reduction potential that can be achieved 1) by restoring eutrophic forested mires that are a major emission source because of their large surface area, and 2) afforesting cutaway peatlands that will become released from use in record numbers in the next few years. Restoration of cutaway peatlands is also studied. Besides the climate impacts of land use, the impacts on waters are also taken into account.

Project period 2021–2023.

Funding from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry EUR 1,170,400.

  • Dairy and beef industries in Finland - Progressing pathways to carbon neutrality by 2035, NC-GRASS

Hem Raj Bhattarai, Research Scientist, Natural Resources Institute Finland

The project aims to anticipate changes in milk and beef production and offer solutions for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the livestock sector, recommend best cultivation practices to increase carbon sinks, and strengthen the systemic sustainability of livestock and milk production. Our current food system produces almost a third of the global greenhouse gas emissions. Directing the food system onto a sustainable basis creates new opportunities for the actors in the food chain.

3.    Reception: Future thinking for climate smart food systems 

Saturday 12 November at 17–

Welcome to a workshop event organised jointly by the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry and the Nordic Council of Ministers where the main theme is climate-smart food systems of the future.

You will have the opportunity to interview Finnish researchers and other members of Finland’s delegation present at the event.


Anna Salminen
Chief Specialist, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
+358 29 516 2002

Lotta Heikkonen
Chief Specialist, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry 
+358 29 516 2074

Johanna Vanhatalo
Senior Specialist, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry
+358 29 516 2177

Erika Keppola
Communications Specialist, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry 
+358 295 162 187