The Call on Carbon initiative, launched by Nordic climate-business networks – Climate Leadership Coalition (Finland), the Haga Initiative (Sweden) and Skift Business Climate Leaders (Norway) – urges governments to ramp up climate investments and adopt more effective carbon pricing systems.
The signatories call on countries to:
- back their net zero targets with with effective, robust, reliable and fit-for-purpose carbon pricing instruments consistent with the Paris Agreement and which will facilitate a cost-efficient investment path to reach net zero,
- align their carbon pricing instruments where appropriate between countries to create a stable and predictable investment environment and
- finalise the rules for the international market mechanism under Article 6 of the Paris Agreement to support cost-effective mitigation efforts, create a level playing field and minimise carbon leakage, while enabling greater ambition.
Within first six weeks, the call has already attracted 87 signatories for the call. These signatories include companies, financial institutions, cities, universities and industrial associations, which are mainly Nordic at this phase. The call has gained support and interest also from European and international business networks. The most prominent signatory is the International Chamber of Commerce, the institutional representative of more than 45 million companies in over 100 countries.
“The Call on Carbon highlights the significant potential in business and government collaborating to enable effective carbon pricing that drives much-needed investment in climate solutions and sustainability,” said John W.H. Denton AO, Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), when signing the call.
From the EU, Pekka Pesonen, Secretary General, from European farmers and forest owners union Copa-Cogeca, and Paul Voss, Managing Director, Euroheat & Power, a network of district energy organisations and professionals have also supported the call.
The Call on Carbon -initiative was presented to Nordic companies in a webinar on 29 March. Representatives of the Finnish, Swedish and Norwegian governments were also present in the meeting.
The call aims to mobilise a large volume of visible support for carbon pricing from all over the world ahead of the November UNFCCC COP in Glasgow and to encourage governments to take faster, greater actions in this area.
Jouni Keronen, CEO, Climate Leadership Coalition, firstname.lastname@example.org, tel. +358 50 453 4881
Kari Mokko, Development Director, Networks and Communications, Climate Leadership Coalition, email@example.com +358 40 751 3281
Senni Raunio, Coordinator and Specialist, Climate Leadership Coalition, firstname.lastname@example.org tel. +358 50 3512390
Nina Ekelund, Executive Director, Haga Initiative, email@example.com tel. +46735022464,
Deniz Butros, Strategist, Haga Initiative, firstname.lastname@example.org tel. +46764271580
Bjørn K. Haugland, CEO, Skift Business Climate Leaders, email@example.com tel. +4797687315,
Mathias Johnsen, Communications, Skift Business Climate Leaders, firstname.lastname@example.org tel. +4799425 998
Quotes from the Nordic meeting on 29 March 2021
“Within the EU and Finland, the emission trading scheme has worked well after some problems in the early years. Emissions have decreased as planned and the price levels developed in line with the original intention. The system is ready to be expanded to other domains. It is a pleasure to note that businesses support carbon pricing widely,” says Kimmo Tiilikainen, State Secretary, Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment, Finland, who has also served as Minister of the Environment, Housing, Energy and Agriculture.
“The Coalition of Finance Ministers for Climate Action – 53 countries, 16% of global CO2 emissions, 30% of Global GDP – views carbon pricing as a key tool to attract climate related investments and to create new jobs,” said Pekka Moren, Special Representative of Finance Minister on Climate Action, Finland and a co-chair of the Climate Coalition meetings of the ministers’ deputies.
“To set a price on emissions is consequently fundamental for climate policy. Energy and carbon dioxide taxes have had a significant impact on emission development in Sweden since the early 1990s. Since the introduction of the carbon tax 30 years ago, our national carbon emissions have dropped by 26 per cent, while our GDP has gone up by 75 per cent. The carbon tax has been the main instrument to achieve this. Still, fossil subsidies are a major problem worldwide as well as within the EU. The value of global fossil-fuel consumption subsidies is falling, but subsidy removal is far from complete. This is an area where we need to step up our efforts. If ever, now it is time to act”, Annika Jacobson, State Secretary to Minister for the Environment and Climate and Deputy Prime Minister, Per Bolund, Sweden
“Good climate policies must also be good policies for businesses, so that we can create jobs and cut emissions at the same time. The Norwegian government will increase the CO2 tax to 200 EUR by 2030. We do that not because we want more revenue, but to adjust our economy and businesses for the future. I believe that our economy will be more competetive with lower emissions and higher carbon prices, says Mathias Fischer, State Secretary for the Ministery of Climate and Environment, Norway,” Mathias Fischer, State Secretary, Minister of Climate and Environment, Norway
“Corporates, governments and investors need to cooperate to speed up the transition to a net-zero economy. Governments need to ensure that the price of carbon supports the transition to net-zero emission,” said Ylva Wessén, President & CEO, Folksam Group
“A high quota price is the key to saving the planet. The proposed quota price of about 200 Euro by the Norwegian government is an excellent initiative,” said Jens Ulltveit-Moe, Chairman of UMOE, Skift and the Centre of International Climate and Environmental Research, Norway
“Private sector investments require predictability and a clear transition signal. The best way to do this is to get a market-based price tag for carbon emissions. It is also important to make carbon pricing as comprehensive as possible internationally. From an industry perspective, 2050 is just one or two investment cycles away. Carbon pricing must take a leap forward. The Confederation of Finnish Industries has signed the call and urges all industrial associations to join,” said Jyri Häkämies, CEO, the Confederation of Finnish Industries.
“Carbon pricing is the key tool to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which we should do at a large scale first. It could create the incentives needed for land-owners to increase carbon sequestration. Any carbon trading scheme shall be built on credible data on carbon flows conditional on alternative agricultural and forestry management practices,” says Juha Marttila, President, The Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners in Finland (MTK).
“Cities have three main roles in climate mitigation. We can reduce emissions and improve carbon sinks through our own actions, enable green businesses to grow by various ways and engage citizens in climate actions. Effective carbon pricing helps in all actions. In Lahti, we have applied carbon trading also at an individual level with encouraging results. The City of Lahti has signed the call and invites other cities and city and region associations to come on board,” says Pekka Timonen, Mayor, Lahti, European Green Capital 2021. Lahti aims to achieve climate neutrality by 2025.
“Carbon pricing is a vital element in ramping up the investments needed. This is the right moment for the EU, China, the USA and like-minded countries to lead a world-wide effort on carbon price development,” says Karl-Henrik Sundström, Chairman of the Climate Leadership Coalition
“Today, only a quarter of global greenhouse gas emissions are covered by carbon pricing initiatives, and a fraction of those are within the recommended range for the Paris Agreement. Direct fossil fuel subsidies are tenfold higher and the indirect costs of fossil combustion and the impacts magnified by climate change a hundred times greater than the revenues raised by the carbon pricing. Last winter, we concluded that much bigger actions are needed and we initiated the call. It has been delightful to see how wide support the call has gained already. Sincere thanks to all signatories and supporters,” said the initiators Jouni Keronen, CLC, Nina Ekelund, Haga Initiative, and Bjørn K. Haugland, Skift Business Climate Leaders.