Police detain 29 climate activists following protest at Lapland pulp mill

The demonstration involved Greenpeace activists from Finland, Sweden Denmark, Norway, Poland, the Netherlands and Germany. (Antti Ullakko / Yle )

Greenpeace and Elokapina activists blocked access to Metsä Group’s mill on Wednesday to protest against unsustainable forest management practices.

Police took 29 climate activists into custody on Wednesday after a protest at the Lapland paper mill in Kemi.

The demonstration was organised by environmental group Greenpeace and was also attended by members of Elokapina, the Finnish branch of Extinction Rebellion.

“The police arrested the activists who refused to vacate the premises, with the last ones being apprehended after 5pm,” Oona Käyhkö, Greenpeace’s forestry expert, told Yle.

Mill access blocked 

The activists blocked access to the mill to protest against unsustainable forest management, Käyhkö said, and called on companies to align their practices with climate targets and ecological limits.

According to Greenpeace, the demonstration involved activists from Finland, Sweden Denmark, Norway, Poland, the Netherlands and Germany.

Authorities said that the protest had not been reported to the police in advance, as required by law.

In a press release, police explained that they had issued an order to disperse and offered the protestors the option of relocating the demonstration.

“During the afternoon and early evening, police removed eight activists who had trespassed onto the Metsä Fibre bioproducts factory site and climbed onto cranes, in addition to other activists outside the factory gates who blocked rail and road traffic. Nearly 30 activists who did not comply with the police’s order to leave were detained under the Police Act,” the statement said.

Related stories from around the North: 

Finland: Finnish government buys naturally diverse historical island from forestry giant, Yle News

Norway: World’s northernmost coal power plant shuts down, The Independent Barents Observer

RussiaArctic national park expands, becomes Russia’s biggest, The Independent Barents Observer

Sweden: Prospecting Boom Squeezes Sami Land, Radio Sweden

Yle News

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