May 21, 2021

Last March, the Finnish Mining Association commissioned the market research company Taloustutkimus to conduct a national mining barometer to canvass Finns’ views on the mining industry. A survey was carried out simultaneously in nine mining locations.

Regardless of age, gender and location, respondents viewed mining operations favorably. The results indicate that residents of mining regions are even more supportive of the mining industry than people living in other areas.

As part of the study, Taloustutkimus also surveyed Kittilä residents’ views on mining. A random sample of about a hundred people were invited to participate in the study. According to the results, local residents have a positive view of mining in Kittilä. More than 90% of the respondents felt that the mining sector brings jobs to areas that might otherwise offer few career opportunities. In addition, 86% of the respondents said that it was better that mining operations were carried out in Finland than in countries where environmental standards and working conditions are at a lower level. Respondents in Kittilä also held a positive view on the expansion of mining operations, with 60% saying new mines could be established in Finland.

The majority of respondents from the Kittilä region believed that mining work would be dirty and strenuous. “The Kittilä mine invests strongly in new mining technology, and mining work is changing rapidly. For example, we have tested and acquired automated and remote-controlled mining machines that help improve occupational safety and well-being,” shares Agnico Eagle Finland’s managing director Jani Lösönen.

Respondents in Kittilä rejected the claim that mining operations were not required in Europe, with 78% disagreeing with it. Overall, 69% of the respondents were in disagreement with the claim. The majority (63%) of the respondents in Kittilä estimated that the recycling of metals will not eliminate the need for mines, and most (70%) also recognized that they used products that contained mined materials on a daily basis.

Almost a third of all respondents (32%) believed the mining sector to be a major producer of greenhouse gases, in comparison with 14% of the respondents in Kittilä.  In fact, the sector only generates about 0.8% of Finland’s greenhouse gas emissions, which is less than 8% of the emissions produced by Finnish households (Source: Greenhouse gas emissions in Finland grew in 2018, Statistics Finland).

“It’s great to see that the support for mining operations is strong in Kittilä and that people appreciate the jobs they bring. The Kittilä mine offers jobs to a total of about 1,100 people, roughly 500 of whom it employs directly, with the remaining 600 being contractor personnel. We have also carried out long-term collaboration with various sectors, which, I’m sure, is reflected in the results,” explains Lösönen.

For further information, please contact:

Elsi Malkki, Communications and Community Relations Manager
Tel.: +358 40 612 4556