A running enthusiast braves the slippery streets and chilly weather of February in Helsinki/Lehtikuva

A new study put Finland in the spotlight this week when it was unveiled as the most physically active country during the pandemic.

Published in the Journal of Frontiers in Psychology, the study examined cross-cultural health behaviors and the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on perceived wellbeing. It also analysed how different confinement measures in multiple countries led to differences in health outcomes.

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The Olkiluoto Nuclear Power Plant units (OL1, OL2 and OL3) Eurajoki, Western Finland/Lehtikuva

The international press revealed that Finland will soon be home to the largest nuclear reactor in Europe this week. The Olkiluoto 3 (OL3) nuclear power plant unit was granted a charging permit on 26 March.

Located in Eurajoki, Southwest Finland, the unit is expected to produce around 14 per cent of the country’s electricity and will likely begin commercial operations in February 2022.

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Teemu Pukki, seen wearing an "I stand with Glen" t-shirt, has called for UEFA to do more to combat racism in football/Lehtikuva

Finnish football players were in the spotlight this week when they expressed their support for teammate Glen Kamara by wearing “I stand with Glen” t-shirts.

Kamara, who plays for the Scottish professional football club Rangers, was allegedly the target of racist comments during a Europa League match against the Slavia Prague football club last week. 

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Finland's female-led government headed by Sanna Marin has received several misogynistic messages on social media/Lehtikuva

A new report has revealed that Finland’s female-led government has repeatedly been the target of misogynistic harassment and abuse online.  

The report, which was published by the NATO Strategic Communications Centre of Excellence based in Latvia, states that the five ministers most frequently attacked were all female.

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Solar Foods is applying for novel food approval for the artificially produced protein (Image source: Solar Foods)

Finnish startup Solar Foods has been receiving significant attention from the international media for its attempts to create a plant-based protein “out of thin air.” 

The company has received 25 million euros in state and private funding to develop the product, which it says can be used in health drinks, yogurt and even as a meat substitute. 

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An aerial view of ice surfers skating across the frozen Baltic Sea off the coast of Helsinki/Lehtikuva

A group of volunteers in Finland have captured the attention of news desks across the globe with their attempts to create the world’s largest ice carousel. 

The giant spinning ice disk measures over 300 metres and is powered by a boat motor. It will be able to claim the Guinness world record if it can complete an entire rotation.

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Since COVID- 19 restrictions across the world are compelling people to stay indoors, the Finnish activity of “Kalsarikänni,” which involves drinking alcohol in your underwear at home, attracted new proponents this week. 

Cultural and tourism website This is Finland defines Kalsarikänni or “pantsdrunk” as “the feeling when you are going to get drunk home alone in your underwear—with no intention of going out.” 

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Most runners in the country still prefer to wear shoes/Lehtikuva

Finnish sports enthusiasts have embraced a new trend—running through snow wearing only socks and no shoes. The latest craze hit headlines across the world this week, with many marvelling at the phenomenon.  

According to those who indulge in the practice, running without footwear—even in snow that reaches depths of half a meter—provides a sense of freedom.

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The Finnish town of Salla made headlines this week when it launched a bid to host the 2032 Summer Olympics. Located in Lapland, temperatures in what is sometimes called Finland’s coldest town often drop to -50℃.

The bid is actually a humorous attempt to draw attention to the effects of climate change. The video depicts residents playing summer sports such as beach volleyball and swimming in winter conditions. 

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The Finnish city of Oulu gained recognition for its residents’ enduring love for cycling this week. Despite being covered by snow for five months a year, bikers in the Central Finland city brave the weather to keep pedalling even through the coldest and darkest months.

One reason for this is that the ploughing of cycle paths is given antecedence over that of roads during winter. Additionally, Oulu uses a digital map that indicates real-time conditions of bicycle, pedestrian and car routes.

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Street maintenance staff clear snow off the street in Sofiankatu, Helsinki/Lehtikuva

Helsinki’s systematic and efficient methods of dealing with heavy snowfall garnered praise from international news outlets this week.

The city was barely inconvenienced when faced with a blizzard last week, unlike other countries in Europe, which have struggled to cope with the icy weather this month.

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