Consumption and climate change mitigation (SYKE-CCM)
Consumption, production and greenhouse gas emissions have been tightly connected to each other and increased almost hand in hand in the industrialized countries during the last 50 years. Despite the relatively wealthy living conditions that have been reached they still tend to increase. For example in Finland the electricity use in private consumption doubled between 1983 and 2006. Decoupling these connections and finding and adopting more sustainable life-styles is a key challenge to the global action for climate change mitigation. Public organizations, with a share of 15% of GDP, have an important role in promoting sustainable purchasing and consumption.
The average yearly per capita climate change impact from Finnish private consumption is around 9 tons (CO2 equivalents). The most important consumption commodity groups are housing, driving with a passenger car, and food. For many persons, also holiday flights cause significant climate change impacts. Public consumption, i.e. the administration and the public services like education and health care, cause an additional 2 tons to the average yearly per capita climate change impact.
The information gained so far has been valuable for prioritizing the work on different product groups and designing action plans for a more sustainable production. However, the possibilities for decreasing the impacts by more sound choice and use of products and services and more climate conscious life-styles is still an almost unexplored field in science. Credible and illustrative information is urgently needed both to guide people to climate-friendly choices and politicians to make wise decisions about effective policy instruments. There is also need for new types of products and services, like real time visualizing of the electricity use at homes.
SYKE activities in support of climate-friendly consumption aim to produce information on and tools for
- sustainable consumer choices
- energy saving and increased energy efficiency in households
- greener public procurement
Government Institute for Economic Research VATT, SYKE, MTT Agrifood Research, National Consumer Research Institute KTK, VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation TEKES and six companies, 2008-2009
- Environmental impacts of the consumer's choice and communicating them to consumers - examples of environmental impacts of foodstuffs and housing (ConsEnv)
MTT Agrifood Research Finland, SYKE, National Consumer Research Center, Thule Institute, The Environmental Cluster Research Programme, 2006-2009
- Eco-efficient public purchasing – economic advantageousness and legal possibilities
Helsinki University of Technology, SYKE, The Academy of Finland, 2005-2009
- Household energy awareness technologies (HEAT'07)
SYKE, BaseN Ltd, Motiva Ltd, Helsinki University of Technology, Vantaa Energy Ltd, Vantaa Energy Electricity Networks Ltd, SITRA, 2007-2008
- Finnish furniture panel
SYKE, Ministry of the Environment, 2004-2008
- Eco-Benchmark - Measuring methods and consumer information tools for sustainable consumption - development of benchmarks for the environmental impacts of products and consumption patterns, SYKE, National Consumer Research Center, MTT Agrifood Research Finland, Finnish Game and Fisheries Research Institute, The Environmental Cluster Research Programme, 2003-2006
- Measuring green public procurement in the EU, Virage (NL), SYKE, et al., EU Commission, 2005-2006
Private consumption and Integrated Product Policy
- Heiskanen, E., Timonen, P., Grönroos, J., Honkanen, A., Katajajuuri, J.-M., Kurppa, S., Mäkinen, T., Nissinen, A., Seppälä, J., Virtanen, Y. & Voutilainen, P. 2007. Developing a benchmark tool for sustainable consumption: an iterative process. Applied Environmental Education and Communication 6:127-137.
- Nissinen A. & Parikka K. 2007. Promoting factors and early indicators of a successful product panel. Journal of Cleaner Production 15: 1674-1682.
- Nissinen, A., Grönroos, J., Heiskanen, E., Honkanen, A., Katajajuuri, J.-M., Kurppa, S., Mäkinen, T., Mäenpää, I., Seppälä, J., Timonen, P., Usva, K., Virtanen, Y. & Voutilainen, P. 2006. Developing benchmarks for consumer-oriented LCA-based environmental information on products, services and consumption patterns. Journal of Cleaner Production 15(6): 538-549.
- Parikka, K. & Nissinen, A. 2005. Environmental Information in Instructions for Use of Consumer Products. Nordic Council of Ministers, Copenhagen. TemaNord 2005: 513.
Greener public purchasing
- Nissinen, A., Parikka-Alhola, K. & Rita, H. 2009. Environmental criteria in the public purchases above the EU threshold values by three Nordic countries: 2003 and 2005. Ecological Economics 68: 1838-1849.
- Parikka-Alhola, K., Nissinen, A. & Ekroos, A. 2006. Green award criteria in the most economically advantageous tender in public purchasing. In: Thai, K.V. & Piga, G. (Editors). Advancing public procurement. PrAcademics Press, Boca Raton, USA. P. 257-279.
- Bouwer, M., Jonk , M., Berman, T., Bersani, R., Lusser, H., Nappa, V., Nissinen, A., Parikka, K., Szuppinger, P. & Viganò, C. 2006. Green Public Procurement in Europe 2006 - Conclusions and recommendations.pdf (544 kb). Virage Milieu & Management bv, Korte Spaarne 31, 2011 AJ Haarlem, the Netherlands.
- Kippo-Edlund, P., Hauta-Heikkilä, H., Miettinen, H. & Nissinen, A. 2005. Measuring the Environmental Soundness of Public Procurement in Nordic Countries. Nordic Council of Ministers, Copenhagen. TemaNord 2005:505.
- Bouwer, M., de Jong, K., Jonk, M., Berman, T., Bersani, R., Lusser, H., Nissinen, A., Parikka, K. & Szuppinger, P. 2005. Green Public Procurement in Europe 2005 - Status overview.pdf (2072 kb). Virage Milieu & Management bv, Korte Spaarne 31, 2011 AJ Haarlem, the Netherlands.
Dr. Ari Nissinen, Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, tel. +358 400 148 813, firstname.lastname@example.org [ari nissinen]