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All Points North #45: Platforms, promises and platitudes - the Greens

The Greens will almost certainly be part of government formation talks after parliamentary elections, says journalist Sam Kinsgley as APN continues its series examining Finland's political parties.

Audio: Yle News

A new party support poll shows the Greens with pretty much the same support levels of the outgoing Prime Minister's party, the Centre Party. The APN podcast continued its series of pre-election party profiles by taking a deeper look at Finland's most environmentally-conscious party, currently led by Pekka Haavisto.

Our experts, journalist Sam Kingsley and political pundit Sini Korpinen, agree that although the climate change issue is a high priority for each of the parties ahead of the election, the Greens have the most ambitious platform for tackling it, having outlined specific targets and timetables. Among other things, the Greens say they want to achieve carbon neutrality in Finland by 2030.

Journalist Kingsley says the Greens are almost certainly going to be asked to be a coalition partner in Finland's next government. He said the top-polling party, the Social Democrats, and the second place National Coalition Party would probably be both be willing to work with the Greens who can add 10-or-so MP seats to gain a decision-making majority in Parliament.

Pundit Korpinen says the new Greens platform concept of emphasising political responsibility for enacting climate change policy and taking some of the guilt away from consumers will resonate better with voters than lectures about eating less meat and driving less.

While other parties are only now jumping on the eco-bandwagon, the Greens have already been working to expanded their repertoire of themes. APN also heard from Turku University's Jenni Karimäki, a political researcher who's been tracking the Greens for years. She says the party has "successfully broadened their issue ownership" ahead of the elections, and has articulated strong positions on increased funding for early childhood education and universities, for example.

Election debate on Monday, 25 March

Voters will get a chance to hear more from politicians as Yle News hosts representatives of the country's nine major parliamentary groups in a live election debate on Monday. You can follow the live broadcast from 3pm (1pm GMT) on 25 March right here at yle.fi/news, via our Facebook page and on Yle Areena. Join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #YleNewsDebate.

If you have any questions, or would like to share something on your mind, just contact us via WhatsApp on +358 44 421 0909, on our Facebook or Twitter account, or at yle.news@yle.fi.

The All Points North podcast is a weekly look at what's going on in Finland. Subscribe via iTunes (and leave a review!), listen on Spotify and Yle Areena or find it on your favourite podcatching app or via our RSS feed.

This week's podcast episode was presented by Zena Iovino and Mark B. Odom, with additional reporting by Denise Wall. Pamela Kaskinen was the producer, and the sound engineer was Laura Koso.

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