Finland Is Set To Become The First Country To Ban Coal Power

Finland rules 👊

24/11/2016 10:53 | Updated 2 days ago

Finland is widely expected to become the first country in the world to actually ban the use of coal power stations.

The government is being tipped to announce the bold decision along with a new climate and energy strategy for the country in March 2017.

Pawel Kopczynski / Reuters

It would be a significant step forward in countries prohibiting the types of energy production that we know directly contribute to putting harmful gasses into the atmosphere.

While coal currently only provides around eight per cent of the country’s energy needs the move will have a significant impact on Finland’s own energy companies.

Finland has already made significant pushes towards using more renewable energy, in fact in 2015 it revealed that nearly half of all its energy needs were provided by renewable energy with the majority of it coming from hydro power.

UniversalImagesGroup via Getty Images
Hydroelectric plants like this one provide much of Finland's energy.

Currently it is only regional states that have outright banned coal such as Oregon in the United States and Ontario in Canada.

This decision, while bold, is part of an increasing wave of strict new guidelines being put in place by Northern European countries and even more central powers like Germany.

In June this year it was reported that Norway was heavily considering a full ban on the sale of new petrol or diesel cars by 2025. This was then echoed by Germany which also made the decision to ban the sale of combustion engine cars by 2030.

While Germany’s laws will need to be ratified by the European Union the country usually leads the way for European legislature and so it’s hoped that in time, other countries will follow suit.

Finland’s decision to ban coal however hasn’t been met without some opposition.

The Helsinki Times reports that Finnish Energy (ET) has expressed strong concerns about the decision.

Jukka Leskelä, the managing director of ET said: “The discussion about prohibiting the use of coal under law is inexplicable. Such an effort would not succeed without offering substantial compensation [to energy producers].”

“I fail to understand how the central administration can spend so recklessly and be so unappreciative of the situation in the energy markets,” 

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