Climate change and city emissions

Aurinkolasku näkyy puiden läpi, voimalaitoksen piipuista nousee höyryä.

There are also signs of climate change in Kuopio. Temperatures and the number of heat waves have increased, posing a significant health risk, especially for elderly residents. Indoor temperatures are already high at times, increasing the need for air conditioning, especially in nursing homes. On the other hand, the need for heating buildings during the winter season is decreasing.

Climate change also leads to higher humidity, which intensifies mould problems in buildings and may decrease their service life. Simultaneously, increased wind-driven rain poses a risk to building structures as well. Therefore, accumulation of moisture in structures must be prevented and sufficient drying ensured.

Heavy rainfall events have also become more frequent and can cause surface water flooding, especially in urban environments. Management solutions for water drainage must improve in the urban environment, both through sufficient organic absorption into the ground and an effective water drainage network.

The warming climate will prolong the growing season, and the abundance ratios of plant and animal species will probably change. The eutrophication of water bodies is another challenge, connected to the warming climate as well as an increase in nutrient load such as Nitrogen.

Land use and infrastructure planning can affect the vulnerability of communities in the long term. At the same time, safeguarding biodiversity is a key issue in adapting to climate change.

We can adapt to climate change in many ways. Adapting efforts aim to prevent or mitigate the negative effects of climate fluctuations and to benefit from positive effects.

Climate change can no longer be completely prevented, but we can reduce its harmful effects. This means that we in Kuopio will also need to adapt to some of the effects. The scale of the change depends on all of us. Each of us can reduce emissions and the speed of climate change globally by making climate-smart choices. Read more about climate smart living in Kuopio.

The City of Kuopio’s CO2 emission reduction goals

The City of Kuopio has worked actively to slow down climate change and curb greenhouse gas emissions. The first climate strategy for Kuopio was prepared in 2003. The Kuopio City Council approved the current climate policy programme for 2020–2030 in late 2020.

Kuopio aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80% by 2030 compared to the level of 2007. The amount of emissions to be reduced is 542 kt CO2-eq without industry and, if industry is included, 663 kt CO2-eq. Taking into account the impact of earlier decisions, the Kuopio Climate Policy Programme estimates the reduction in the city’s own operations to be 173 kt CO2-eq.

In addition, the aim is to halve the consumption-based carbon footprint from the 2005 level by 2030.

Monitoring CO2 emissions in the city

The city regularly monitors its greenhouse gas emissions using the results of Sitowise Oy’s annual CO2 report. For Kuopio, consumption-based CO2 emissions have been estimated using the model developed in the Kulma project, and calculations have been made for 2022. GHG emissions from the City of Kuopio can also be found in the weekly emission graph of the CO2 report, which includes the greenhouse gases with the highest climate impact. For more information, see below.

Municipal and regional CO2 emissions data can also be found in the online services maintained by the Finnish Environment Institute (Syke):

The city regularly monitors its greenhouse gas emissions using the results of Sitowise Oy’s annual CO2 report. The report is commissioned by regional environmental protection services, and the commissioned calculations include Kuopio and Suonenjoki. The latest CO2 reports for Kuopio and Suonenjoki can be found below.

The CO2 report primarily covers emissions arising from the municipality’s energy consumption and waste management as well as other emissions occurring in the municipality’s geographical area. In regional emission calculation models, such as the CO2 report, emissions from, for example, agricultural production and the production of products in the municipality’s area are included in the calculation regardless of where the produced products are ultimately consumed. On the other hand, the report excludes many indirect emissions caused by residents’ activities.

CO2 report Kuopio 2020 (pdf, in Finnish)

CO2 report Suonenjoki 2020 (pdf, in Finnish)

For more information

Mari Turunen

Environmental Specialist, Energy Advisor

Minna Kokkonen

Environmental Specialist