CLC climate expert Sari Siitonen: The carbon footprint of households just keeps on growing despite a lot of talk about climate.

More and more workplaces and schools mark Zero Emissions Day

According to a study published in spring 2019 by the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE), 66% of Finland’s consumption-based emissions come from households. Even though emissions created in Finland have come down, we have not been able to decrease our consumption-based emissions since 2000. On the contrary, the carbon footprint of Finnish households has increased by 12% since that year. 

“This is a worrying trend. The share of emissions related especially to the goods and services we buy is growing, and this is eating away at the advances made through reductions to housing-related emissions,” says climate expert and Zero Emissions Day coordinator Sari Siitonen from Climate Leadership Coalition.

For the third time now, Climate Leadership Coalition (CLC) is challenging all Finns to mark International Zero Emissions Day on September 21. The purpose of the day is to give the globe a day off from fossil fuels and to draw people’s attention to their consumer choices.

“Households can reduce their emissions, for example, by choosing public transport, cycling and low-emission vehicles and by using electricity generated by renewable energy sources in the home. Moreover, avoiding wasting food and increasing the amount of local root vegetables in your diet are also good ways to reduce emissions. Remember that you can borrow or hire things. You do not have to own everything yourself.”


Climate Leadership Coalition is having a head start on Zero Emissions Day. Many of CLC’s member companies and organizations will be organizing events and campaigns throughout the week and especially on Friday 20 September. 

“This year, employee events seem to be particularly popular. This is great because CLC’s member organizations are significant employers, and this is a wonderful way to reach a huge number of people and inform them about the impact their choices are having on emissions. When you draw attention to changes made at the workplace on one day, it will inspire people to make more climate-friendly choices every day of the year,” explains Siitonen.

When people show an interest towards climate-friendly products and services, companies will increasingly introduce them to the market. At the moment, CLC’s 56 member organizations offer and are continuously developing cleaner solutions for transportation, travel, living, eating and everyday goods. 


The events and actions taken by CLC members are listed on the CLC campaign website. This year, 28 member organizations will organize events on Zero Emissions Day. SYKE and Sitra will challenge everyone to test their own carbon footprint and reduce it by making smart choices. Helen will take families on a trip through time to the year 2050. You can play the climate change-themed adventure game My2050 at Kansalaistori in Helsinki or at the Espoo Centre in Espoo. IBM will encourage people to make more climate-friendly food choices by explaining the climate impact of food supply chains. There will also be many events in Espoo where people can learn about smart and clean solutions.

Castren & Snellman will be training their employees and challenging them to innovate new solutions for sustainability. Ilmarinen, Kojamo, Lassila & Tikanoja and Neste will encourage their employees to cycle to and from work, while Stora Enso will organize a competition for its personnel to find the most innovative mode of commuting. Caverion, Fortum, Outotec, SEB, Vaisala and Varma will be focusing their attention on cycling and other sustainable modes of transportation and encouraging their personnel to make climate-friendly choices around meals. YIT and the municipality of Ii will focus on reducing food waste. 

OP will organize a Climate Day for its personnel and S Group will organize a theme week around climate issues inspired by the Big Deal Climate Campaign. VTT will share information with its employees about climate-friendly choices and, on Friday 20 September, will organize a panel discussion on opportunities to reduce work- and workplace- related emissions. Telia Finland will challenge its employees to share best practices for reducing emissions both internally and on social media.

The Zero Emissions Day event for schools will take place on 21 September at Otaniemi upper secondary school. Finnair, Fortum, KONE, St1, University of Turku and VR will be there to help the participating schools make the most of Zero Emissions Day (more information here). 

Climate Leadership Coalition, climate expert and Zero Emissions Day coordinator Sari Siitonen sari(at), tel. +358 40 761 5221

CLC Communications, Unna Lehtipuu, unna.lehtipuu(at), tel. +358 50 571 0199.

#nollapäästöpäivä, #ZeroEmissionsDay

Climate Leadership Coalition’s purpose is to enhance the competitiveness of Finnish businesses and research organizations, to improve their ability to respond to the threats posed by climate change and natural resource scarcity and to support them in pursuing the business opportunities arising from these. The CLC currently has 56 notable member companies and organizations, representing over half of the total market value of the Helsinki Stock Exchange. For more information, please visit: