Municipality of Ii has been awarded with Hinku-act price for active, long-term and successful work for reducing the greenhouse gases. Ii is committed to reduce 80% of greenhouse gases from 2007 level by 2020, which is even 30 years faster than European Unions climate target. Municipal decision-makers are those who make possible these wise climate alignments inside the municipality.
”Ii’s example points that reducing the emissions has already cost-effective technologies and ways. Also municipality’s emission reduction work has strengthened both municipal- and regional economy. Municipality shows example for its residents and gives possibilities to low emission living” says Jyrki Tenhunen from Finnish environment institute.
During 2007-2015 Ii has reduced emissions by 50% meaning 49500 tons of carbon dioxide which is equivalent to 4500 yearly carbon footprints of Ii`s residents. Commitment and enthusiasm of Municipals leaders has had decisive impact to emission reduction.
“Ii’s example points that reducing the emissions has already cost-effective technologies and ways”Jyrki Tenhunen, research engineer, Finnish environment institute
The municipality has achieved the largest euro savings by improving the energy efficiency of its properties and by eliminating oil heating in municipal properties. The savings achieved through municipal acts are estimated to be equivalent to a decrease of up to 0.75 percentages in Ii’s municipal taxation. Overall in 2012-2016, the municipality of Ii has achieved annual reductions in CO2 emissions of almost 50 kilotons, and 766,000 euros per year with 1.9 million total investment.
Despite its small size, the municipality of Ii is self-sufficient in energy and utilizes a wide variety of renewable energy sources. Ii has acquired a large number of solar power plants through a joint acquisitions. The installed solar panels now have a combined output of 246 kWp. In addition, the municipality of Ii produces 375 GWh of wind power, equivalent to an annual electricity consumption of approximately 18,750 electrically heated detached houses. Municipal employees have five full electric cars and one van, which power is produced with wind and solar power. Ii also utilizes hydroelectricity and produces thermal energy by burning wood.
When applying for the Hinku network, municipalities commit to take emission reductions into account in all major decision-making processes and to influence actors in their area to achieve carbon neutrality.
The municipality of Ii has exemplarily succeeded to get residents to join climate work, for example through service design. Ii won the European Commission’s RegioStars 2017 competition, which has also attracted international publicity.
Since the beginning of 2016, all Ii municipal schools and day care centers have been involved in a 50/50 campaign that monitors heating, electricity and water consumption on a monthly basis and implements energy efficiency measures with students. In the campaign, the municipality will return half of the financial savings to schools in those acts where students are involved in energy efficiency work.
Experiment called “Iisisti” is launching to encourage citizens to switch to renewable energy and energy saving. The purpose of the project is to provide information and understanding of the estimates and other factors behind household and human decision-making in making energy choices.