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Voluntary carbon offsetting becomes easier with the amendment to the Money Collection Act

Ministry of the Interior
18.11.2021 13.57
Press release 147/2021

The Money Collection Act will be amended so that voluntary carbon offsetting services can be provided without a money collection licence in future. These services will be excluded from the scope of the Money Collection Act. The Government submitted the bill amending the Act for approval on Thursday 18 November. The President of the Republic is to approve the bill on 19 November. The Act will enter into force on 22 November 2021.

Voluntary carbon offsetting provides a mechanism for offsetting greenhouse gas emissions, for example from travel or products to be purchased by means of a payment.

“Carbon offsetting is an integral part of climate action and it complements effective emissions reduction measures. It is important that the Money Collection Act does not prevent the provision of these services. In future, the focus should be on developing the qualitative criteria for carbon offsetting services,” says Minister of the Interior Maria Ohisalo.

The amendment to the Money Collection Act contributes to the Government Programme’s objective of making Finland carbon neutral by 2035.

Amendment enables development of the carbon offsetting market

The amendment to the Money Collection Act clarifies the relationship between voluntary carbon offsetting services and the Money Collection Act. Companies and organisations that provide carbon offsetting services seem to find the current legislation unclear.

With the legislative amendment, voluntary carbon offsetting services will be excluded from the scope of the Money Collection Act, and the services can be provided without a money collection licence in future. Activities that are excluded from the scope of the Money Collection Act can be carried out by different service providers, regardless of the legal form of the service provider, that is, whether it is a company, foundation or organisation. 

The amendment enables the development of a functioning market for national voluntary carbon offsetting services, thereby encouraging companies and other operators in the sector to develop new voluntary carbon offsetting services and innovations.

Money Collection Act mainly regulates money collection for non-profit purposes

The Money Collection Act lays down provisions on organising the collection of money and supervising the appropriateness of the collection. Money collection means activities in which funds are collected without compensation by appealing to the public. Money collection requires either a money collection licence that is granted by the National Police Board or, in the case of a small-scale money collection, submission of a notification to the local police department. Companies may not be granted a money collection licence and they cannot organise small-scale money collections.

Inquiries:
Akseli Koskela, State Secretary, tel. +358 295 488 526, [email protected] 
Sanna Leinonen, Senior Specialist, tel. +358 295 488 458, [email protected]