The increasing use of natural resources and the concomitant challenges to sustainable development as well as competitiveness are of major concern to both the international community and to Finnish society and business life. Therefore, Finland needs a shared vision of the means to ensure our future well-being based on natural resources.
The aims of the Sitra-coordinated preparation of the Natural Resources Strategy are to create a vision on the use of natural resources and its management, to set goals and timetables for the bodies responsible for the measures. A new perspective on issues pertaining to natural resources is introduced by studying different natural resources in a joint framework.
"We accepted the request to coordinate the Natural Resources Strategy because the issue is extremely important to Finland and one clear responsible body for the project could not be found. As an independent body, it is easy for Sitra to invite various interested parties to the table," says Executive Vice President Mikko Kosonen from Sitra.
Sirkka Hautojärvi, who retires from her post as the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of the Environment in the beginning of September, will chair the steering committee.
"The world needs blueprints for attaining the goal of sustainable use of natural resources. It is worthwhile for Finland to be spearheading their development. This is important both for the well-being and competitiveness of Finland," says Hautojärvi.
The other members of the steering committee are Jarmo Vaittinen, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry, Erkki Virtanen, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Employment and the Economy, Tarja Cronberg, Chairperson, Finnish National Commission on Sustainable Development (FNCSD), Kimmo Tiilikainen, Chairperson, Finnish Council for Natural Resources, Lea Kauppi, Director General, Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), Michael Hornborg, President, Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK), Tellervo Kylä-Harakka-Ruonala, Director, Confederation of Finnish Industries, and Eero Yrjö-Koskinen, Secretary General, Finnish Association for Nature Conservation. The steering committee will commence its work in June.
In addition to the steering committee, a working group of approximately 15-20 persons will take part in the preparation of the National Nature Resources Strategy and will start its work in October. The strategy work will be launched with a joint fact-finding excursion to Canada and the USA by the working group and the committee.
The results of the work will be presented to Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen in spring 2009.
Project Director Eeva Hellström
Tel. +358 9 6189 9276, +358 50 351 2412