Climate budget promotes the city's carbon neutrality goal

Tampere aims for carbon neutrality by the year 2030. Achieving this goal requires significant reductions in emissions related to transportation, construction, housing, energy use and consumption. To monitor progress toward carbon neutrality, the city has established a climate budget.
Emmi Nieminen and Elina Seppänen look smiling at the camera.
Emmi Nieminen (on the left) and Elina Seppänen work together towards Tampere's climate goal.

With the the climate budget, the City of Tampere monitors the progress of the carbon neutrality goal, the adequacy of climate actions and emissions development in the area. The aim is to provide transparency regarding how much and what types of measures the city invests in climate work. The essential goal is to provide information for decision-making.

Specialists Elina Seppänen and Emmi Nieminen work together within the city’s Climate and Environmental Policy Unit, forming a dynamic duo in climate budget calculations. 

‒ The climate budget is a convenient monitoring tool that allows both decision-makers and residents to track Tampere’s progress in essential carbon neutrality work. It visualises how close we are to achieving climate goals and what proportion of the budget is allocated toward reaching those objectives, Nieminen explains. 

The City of Tampere has recently been awarded the official EU Climate Mission label. The justification for the Climate City label noted Tampere's climate budget and its systematic approach to reducing climate emissions.

Climate work is a part of the city's budget and financial statement

The climate budget sets out Tampere's annual climate emissions cap, including the emissions budget, as well as indicative maximum emissions. The climate budget also includes a financial plan for climate action, which specifies the euros allocated to the city group's climate action in terms of operating expenditure and investments. The implementation of the climate budget is monitored annually in the context of the annual financial statement.

Elina Seppänen stands next to a bike and Emmi Nieminen sits on the bike rack.
The climate budget links the carbon neutrality goal to the city's decision making processes, budget and financial statement.

‒ We had familiarized ourselves with Oslo’s climate budget, and we thought this could be a good way to present things, Nieminen says.

‒ The actual idea to create the climate budget in 2020 came from the city’s financial unit. Then Emmi and I started brainstorming how Tampere’s own climate budget would look in practice, Seppänen continues.

The climate actions of the city and its residents share the same fundamental idea

Tampere aims to enable its residents to lead a sustainable lifestyle. The city has taken and continues to take actions to promote sustainable mobility, produce clean energy, and enhance the energy efficiency of municipally owned buildings and other facilities.

‒ We have every opportunity to build a city based on sustainable lifestyles ‒ one that is pleasant, healthy and safe for both people and the environment, says Seppänen.

Seppänen and Nieminen encourage residents to consider the sustainability of their own choices.

‒ Residents employ largely the same methods as the city does. No one can do everything, but everyone can do something, and I want to encourage each and every person to take action. Even small steps make a significant difference. For instance, switching from a car to a bike or walking just one day a week can contribute, says Nieminen.

Key actions for reducing emissions include improving energy efficiency and cutting peak consumption, especially during colder weather or when electricity prices rise. Prioritizing sustainable transportation is also crucial. Additionally, phasing out fossil fuels has a significant impact both in buildings and transportation.

‒ I perceive a sustainable city as a place that is more functional, pleasant, and community-oriented for all residents, Seppänen summarises.

Emmi Nieminen and Elina Seppänen lean on a tree and look at each other laughing.
Nieminen and Seppänen emphasize the importance of collaboration in pursuing carbon neutrality.
Text: Ilona Reinikainen
Photos: Laura Happo
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