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Finland Joins Methane to Markets Partnership to Curb Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Release Date: 07/23/2008
Contact Information: Marilyn Franklin, (202) 564-4355 /

(Washington, D.C. - July 23, 2008) Finland is the latest country to join the Methane to Markets Partnership, sharing their expertise in the fight against climate change. The partnership, now 26 members strong, aims to reduce emissions of methane, a potent greenhouse gas and clean energy source.

"The challenge of global climate change is exactly that - global," said EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson. "As good neighbors, the U.S. and Finland are working together toward a cleaner, healthier, more productive world."

By 2015, Methane to Markets has the potential to reduce annual methane emissions by up to 50 million metric tons of carbon equivalent. Roughly, this equals the carbon dioxide emissions from the annual energy use of about 16 million American homes.

Finland is reducing methane emissions by encouraging farmers to recover and use methane and by installing biogas recovery units on 33 of the nation's landfills. The Finnish government is providing grants that cover some of the costs of these domestic projects as well as funding projects overseas in nations like Honduras and Nicaragua.

"Our nation is one of the world pioneers in the capture and the utilization of biogases from landfills and agriculture," said Mr. Pekka Lintu, Finland's Ambassador to the United States. "Our companies have developed new technologies and gained expertise in methane utilization projects not only domestically but also around the world. The Methane to Markets Partnership offers an important new networking facility to Finnish companies and experts."

Finland's decision to seek membership in the Methane to Markets Partnership is well in line with its energy and climate policy objectives. Finland plans to serve on the Methane to Markets technical subcommittees for the landfill and agricultural sectors.

Methane is a greenhouse gas that traps heat in the atmosphere at a rate more than 20 times higher than carbon dioxide. In addition, methane is a primary constituent of natural gas and an important energy source. Efforts to prevent or utilize methane emissions can provide significant energy, economic and environmental benefits.

The other Methane to Markets partners include - Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Colombia, Ecuador, the European Commission, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Mongolia, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, Poland, Russia, South Korea, Thailand, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, the United States and Vietnam. Additionally, the partnership's project network includes more than 750 private sector entities, financial institutions, nongovernmental agencies and other organizations.

Methane to Markets, launched in 2004, is a public/private partnership that reduces greenhouse gas emissions by promoting the cost-effective, near-term recovery and use of methane, while providing clean energy to markets around the world.

For more information, visit the Methane to Markets Web site at: