From time to time I am asked, which science is the stronger one, ecology or economy. The answer is obvious. Ecology sets the framework for all human activities, including and especially the economy. There is no sustainable economic or social development if we keep breaching ecological limits.
Active international cooperation is a key issue in meeting the biggest challenges of our time, such as climate change, overconsumption of natural resources and turning our economies to a sustainable path. Open exchanges of ideas and bringing people from different educational, professional and cultural backgrounds to work together often leads to the best possible results in developing solutions to multifaceted challenges.
As an organic farmer, I participated in numerous international events. During my farming carrier I had voluntary or paid workers and practicians from more than 20 countries. I learned a lot from them. I hope they learned a lot on my farm too.
The year 2015 was an extremely important one for international efforts to enhance sustainable development globally. First, all the countries of the world agreed upon 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and their implementation plan, Agenda 2030. For the first time ever, there are shared goals for all countries to work for socially, environmentally and economically sustainable development. Later in 2015, we succeeded in negotiating the Paris Climate Agreement. Again, the majority of states were committed to working towards its goal of keeping global temperature rise well below 2 degrees Celsius.
Feeding a rapidly growing world in the face of climate change and resource scarcity will be an immense challenge and test for human ingenuity. The effects of climate change on food production around the world are accelerating and could lead to more than 500,000 deaths by the year 2050, according to a grim new study. Rising temperatures, more frequent droughts and extreme weather events will result in crop productivity losses for farmers in many parts of the world.
Slush is a startup and tech conference organised annually in Helsinki, Finland. Last year Slush took place 30 Nov - 1 Dec 2017. The event which was established in 2008 by a few techies and game producers, has grown to a huge international event, from a small gathering of 300 people.
This was my first experience with Slush. Arriving there was like stepping into the future. There were cool startups and new inventions everywhere you looked. It felt super inspiring and motivating to see what these intelligent and innovative people had come up with, to help other people and the community.
When I was a boy Finnish winters used to be cold and snowy. A white Christmas was more of a rule than an exception. Today, things have turned the other way around, at least in the Helsinki region: winters have gradually become rainy and warmer than before. However, globally we are among the very fortunate ones – it can be annoying to walk dark and rainy streets for months but that is nothing compared to the extreme weather conditions caused by climate change in other parts of the world.
Recently, the trade war between China and the US has again dominated the media news headlines. On the 23rd, in response to the US tariff hikes on $300bn of Chinese imports, China was forced to take counter-measures to impose tariffs on $75bn of the US imports. Instead of reflecting on its own unilateral behavior, the US has taken steps to further aggravate trade conflicts, announcing higher tariffs on $550bn of Chinese imports and ordering the US companies to withdraw from China.
Viewpoint by: Chen Li, Ambassador of the People’s Republic of China in Finland
Recently, the situation in Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (SAR) of China drew wide attention from the international community. For a long time, Hong Kong has always been a global metropolitan city, one of the most robust economy and a center of international banking, trade and cargo. It has a beautiful name “Pearl of the Orient”, and is seen as a paradise for shopping. But today’s Hong Kong turns into a scene of chaos. What on earth has Hong Kong become?
A new surprising addition to the long list of the Hungarian government’s enemies is Finland. Here is why.
“We need a nervous system, a strong nervous system, to enable us to show due respect, and answer questions politely – not with a smile or a laugh – when our Finnish friends ask us about and delve into the rule of law in Hungary” – said Viktor Orbán Hungarian PM in his opening speech at the 30th Bálványos Summer Open University and Student Camp.
Currently, the so-called Sino-US economic and trade friction and its affiliated issues have become a heated topic worldwide, and drew intensive attention from all countries including Finland. As a follower of this matter, I would like to share some of my personal observations.
Firstly, trade conflict prompted by the US affects many countries and many areas in the global market, and goes far beyond China-US trade issues. As the world’s second largest economy, China is a main victim of the US’s tariff sticks. After 11 rounds of consultations, the US suddenly threatened to raise tariff rates on China.