Finland’s EU Presidency programme revealed
Finland takes over the 6-month rotating presidency of the European Council on 1st July and this afternoon Prime Minister Antti Rinne (SDP) will submit the programme to parliament at 14:00. Officials have already said Finland will place an emphasis on climate change issues, although at a summit last week in Brussels EU countries failed to agree on even a mid-century deadline to go carbon neutral; meanwhile no matter what Finland wants to do it’s likely the next 6 months will increasingly see the attention of EU countries focused on Brexit. Interior Minister Maria Ohisalo (Green) anyway says the agenda is an important way for Finland to influence the EU.
Finns willing to compromise lifestyle to save environment
The majority of Finns are willing to change their way of life to protect the environment. That’s the findings of a new study out today from EVA think tank – however, the number is smaller than a decade ago. Right now 55% of people say they would compromise on living standards to reduce pollution and their own environmental impact. But that’s down from 75% in 1992 and 67% in 2009. So what would Finns be willing to change? 70% say they’d cut back on personal consumption like buying more clothes; 66% say they’d reduce energy consumption; 59% say they would compensate for air travel by paying extra charges and 56% even said they’d give up air travel completely. The most divisive issue is giving up meat: while 47% said they would be willing to go meat-free, 45% rejected the idea. Only 31% of Finns said they would be willing to give up driving a private car while 62% are against it. The survey questioned 2059 people and the margin of error is up to 3% in either direction.
Lapland truck crash driver taken to Norway hospital
The Finnish driver of a truck that went over a cliff in northern Lapland has been taken to hospital in Norway for treatment. Police say they’re investigating the case as a drunk driving incident. The crash happened in Utsjoki on Nuorgamintie when the truck carrying drilling equipment went off the road and down a steep slope. Police say the truck was badly damaged and the driver injured in the incident. He’s been taken to hospital in Kirkenes in Norway for treatment.
Wednesday morning weather
It’s a sunny and warm start across the north of Finland today, from Lapland and down into central areas where temperatures range from +10C in Kilpisjärvi to +16C in Oulu. Further south there’s extensive cloud cover and some rain in the forecast too, from Jyväskylä through Tampere and Pirkanmaa into Turku, Åland and the south west. There’s cloud too in the south east around Lappeenranta, and rain this morning in Helsinki and the capital city region. A low pressure system on Wednesday and Thursday will see half of June’s expected rainfall arrive in just 48 hours – possibly up to 30mm in the south although the heaviest rains will hit Estonia, rather than southern Finland.