Carbon sinks collect and store carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Carbon sinks include forests, waters and wetlands. Forests are the largest and most important carbon sinks in the Lahti region. In general terms, it can be said that extending the forest rotation periods and decreasing logging have a positive impact on climate. On top of this, wood construction is promoted, because wood products such as wooden buildings function as a carbon store – and if the store grows, it functions as a carbon sink.
Actual emissions are compensated by financially supporting projects that reduce emissions or increase carbon sinks. The projects promote e.g. the production of renewable energy such as solar power and tree planting. Emissions can also be compensated by buying off rights of the emissions market, thereby preventing the emissions from being produced elsewhere.
Carbon sink and offsetting plan outlines the actions
The carbon sink and offsetting plan of the City of Lahti outlines the actions Lahti can take to achieve carbon neutrality. The majority of carbon sinks or offsetting in the carbon neutrality goal is still open.
Lahti actively follows and participates in promoting the regional carbon sink and offsetting project and unifying the national policies such as the emission calculation method. Increasing the carbon sink potential of Päijät-Häme is essential, as the carbon sinks of the geographical area of Lahti will likely be insufficient to store the remaining emissions.
Concrete measures and projects are prepared and approved in the budget process of each year and the approval procedures of projects.
- Beginning the offsetting of flight emissions of city employees and elected officials. This is best executed by buying emission rights and supporting offsetting projects. In 2019, flight emissions were 210 tonnes CO2 eq.
- Offsetting the emissions of business trips of city employees and elected officials made with a personal car. In 2019, 745,866 km of business trips were made and with the emissions were 126 tonnes CO2 eq. calculated by the emissions of an average petrol-driven car. Business trips are calculated based on the applied kilometre allowance.
- Updating Lahti’s travel advice, guiding city employees, implementing instructions and monitoring the implementation process.