DHL Global Forwarding has moved two giant pandas from Chengdu, China to Ahtari, Finland via climate neutral transportation – the carbon emissions for the flight are offset through a climate protection project. The male, Huá Bào, or Pyry by its new Finnish name, aged four, and the female, Jín Bàobào, or Lumi, aged three, arrived at Helsinki-Vantaa airport in Finland on January 18 by their own charter flight.
The journey of the pandas from the Dujiangya giant panda centre took them first to the Chengdu airport on January 17, from where they were flown 6,500 kilometres directly to Helsinki on an Iljushin 76 freighter aircraft chartered for the purpose. They were accompanied by two animal handlers and two veterinary physicians and had a supply of 120 kilograms of bamboo on board. After the official welcoming ceremony at the airport with distinguished representatives of Finland and China, a DHL truck took them to Ahtari, some 300 km away in central Finland, where a local “panda carnival” had been arranged to welcome the long awaited new inhabitants of the zoo.
With GoGreen Climate Neutral service, DHL purchases carbon credits from selected projects that meet high standards, reducing emissions and benefitting local communities. The emissions for the panda flight are calculated to be 230 tons of CO2e, which will be particularly offset through a climate protection project which reduces emissions by enabling low-income families in rural Chinese province of Sichuan to switch from coal to household biogas digesters. Deutsche Post DHL Group aims to reduce all its logistics-related emissions to net zero by the year 2050, and offering green solutions is an important part thereof.
Finland and the People’s Republic of China signed a 15-year agreement on joint research on giant pandas last spring. The removal of Lumi and Pyry to Ahtari Zoo is part of the agreement.
The Finnish climate with its snowy winter is similar to that in the giant pandas’ natural habitat in the mountains in China. This was one of the key reasons why Chinese panda experts chose to relocate the panda couple to Finland and Ahtari. Ahtari offers the pandas an environment typical for the species; this will hopefully lead to natural breeding.
The newly constructed Snowpanda house of Ahtari Zoo – including the giant panda’s indoor living rooms and an outdoor playing park – occupy some 10,000 square meters and is one of the largest in the world. Top experts from the panda center inspected the facilities in November and stated it to be the best outside of China.