Building a sustainable economy

Society must move towards a sustainable economy in which less is used to produce more. Environmental problems are in great part due to the production and consumption of goods and services. Steps must be taken to significantly reduce the use of unrenewable natural resources and reduce the emissions and amount of waste we produce. Renewable natural resources must be used sustainably.

Finnish Environment Institute (Syke) produces reliable information on sustainable consumption choices and production methods for consumers, companies and municipalities as well as to support environmental policy decision-making.

We promote the development and implementation of solutions based on a low-carbon circular bioeconomy. We assess the impacts of product and service lifecycles and develop tools for ecological product design. Our activities also emphasise the prevention of waste accumulation, recycling, wastewater and contaminated soil, the risks related to harmful substances as well as industry emissions.

We work together with research institutes, universities, companies organisations and citizens. We also engage in extensive work in international networks.

"Sustainable consumption and production will in future require new types of solutions and approaches, so that we can address the challenges related to carbon neutral activities and a decline in natural resources and biodiversity. At the same time, these challenges create new opportunities for our economic activities and industry.”

- Professor Jyri Seppälä

Our areas of expertise:

The sustainable use of natural resources

  • Assessments on the sustainability of natural resources
  • Sustainable use of ground water resources and stone materials
  • Policy assessments and analyses on sustainable consumption and production
  • Production of information on sustainable consumption choices and tools for supporting decision-making
  • Environmentally-extended assessments of the national economy
  • Nature-based solutions for societal problems

Circular economy and waste

  • Lifecycle assessments for products and services
  • Prevention of waste accumulation and solutions for waste management
  • Sustainable bioeconomy and circular economy solutions for municipalities, industry and agriculture
  • Support for public procurements that promote a low carbon society and a sustainable circular bioeconomy

Climate and protection of ambient air

  • Emissions inventories: air pollutants and greenhouse gases
  • Modelling of energy use (particularly electricity) and air pollutants (especially nanoparticles and black carbon) as well as the research of methods to reduce their related harmful effects
  • Supporting municipal measures for mitigating climate change and circular bioeconomy solutions

Environmental management in industry

  • Best available technology (BAT) information exchange

Hazardous substances

  • Assessment and management of risks posed by hazardous substances from the perspective of the contaminated environment and circular economy
  • Status assessments related to hazardous substances in waters
  • Chemical analysis of hazardous substances and their eco-toxicological definition

Sustainable water management

  • Water management for municipalities and sparsely populated areas, circulation of nutrients in waste water as well as treatment of sludge from treatment plant

Tasks of authorities

  • Government activities: international waste transfers, ozone and F-gases, POP and PIC contaminants and the EMAS
  • Support for preparation of legislation: industry's environment permit procedures, wastes, chemicals, contaminated soil
Published 2018-09-25 at 16:25, updated 2023-04-04 at 14:43
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