Climate change is progressing at an alarming rate and mitigation requires extensive action from the government, local and regional authorities, businesses and citizens. Climate Leadership Coalition, set up by the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, Neste Corporation, Fortum, KONE Corporation, Outotec, Caverion and St1, believes that profitable, sustainable business is the most effective way to respond to global environmental challenges and calls on businesses and other organisations to take faster action to mitigate climate change. The Coalition was established on 18 June 2014.
The purpose of the Coalition is to affect the overall competitiveness and ability of businesses and research organisations in Finland to respond to the threats posed by climate change and the scarcity of natural resources, as well as to improve their ability to capitalise on the business opportunities created these threats. The Coalition promotes international best practices and their implementation. The Coalition’s basic approach is that profitable, sustainable business is the most effective way to respond to global environmental challenges.
In order to implement its purpose, the Coalition
- brings together organisations and private persons who promote the Coalition’s objectives
- collects and shares information with its members on global environment-related trends and compares best practices implemented in other countries
- initiates development projects that support the Coalition’s purpose
- makes proposals to ministries and public organisations on developing the innovation system and research programmes
- organises seminars and events to raise awareness and to identify new business opportunities
- operates as a collaborative body between its members and represents its members in international cooperation organisations
- strives to identify Finnish know-how to serve as a model for effective mitigation of climate change and communicates this on international fora.
Changes in the operating environment
At the latest in autumn 2018, after the publication of the IPCC Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, it had become clear that faster actions would be required to mitigate climate change. In August 2019, the IPCC published a Special Report on Climate Change and Land and in September a Special Report on the Ocean and Cryosphere. These reports show that increased land use has accelerated climate change and that the oceans have grown warmer and acidified and that the surface area of ice sheets has shrunk.
CLC understood the gravity of the situation and in autumn 2018 was involved in launching a Nordic campaign calling on the EU for more ambitious climate policies. By mid-April 2019, the campaign had already attracted a total of 94 supporters, including a large number of CLC member companies.
General and European Parliament elections were held in Finland in 2019. CLC made two proposals for the Finnish Government Programme – one here and the other here – in which it pointed out the importance of also raising the ambition level of the EU’s climate policies as well as the importance of public procurements and low carbon choices for citizens. CLC proposed that the EU should aim for zero emissions by 2050 at the latest, agree a binding carbon budget for greenhouse gases and revise interim emissions targets for 2030 and 2040 and align them with the new net-zero target. Together with the Confederation of Finnish Industries (EK) and the Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK), CLC also held a Suomi ilmastoratkaisujen kärkimaaksi -vaalitilaisuuden (Finland a key country in climate solutions – election event), where the six largest parties attended. Just ahead of the European Parliament elections, CLC joined a broad coalition to submit a petition for immediate action to tackle the climate emergency.
Climate policy objectives were made a focus in Finland’s Government Programme. Finland aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2035 and to be carbon negative shortly thereafter. Additionally, the Government Programme states that “When it comes to tackling climate and sustainability challenges, Finland can play a greater role than its size would suggest – we can leave small footprint while making a big impression.” Finland’s Climate Change Act (609/2015) will be updated to bring it into line with the carbon neutrality target.
Finland also held the rotating Presidency of the Council of the European Union during the sixth-month term 1 July – 31 December 2019. One of the main aims of Finland’s Presidency was to strengthen the EU’s position as a global leader in climate action. This was highly successful. The new President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen’s More ambitious Union – Programme for Europe (European Green Deal) aims for Europe to become the first climate-neutral continent. The programme includes the first European Climate Law to enshrine climate-neutrality target into law. The goal of carbon neutrality is considered as being the greatest challenge and opportunity of our times for Europe to be a leader in promoting circular economy and clean technologies.
“The Climate Leadership Coalition has been instrumental in encouraging the business world and many other stakeholders to support 1.5C compatible climate targets. This encouraged and enabled also political decision makers to do ambitious climate targets for Finland and promote the high ambition level also for EU, during the EU presidency of Finland in 2019,” said Krista Mikkonen, Minister of the Environment and Climate Change.
CLC lauded Ursula von der Leyen’s programme and in its statement in September, called on the EU for a more ambitious and predictable EU-wide systematic solution for achieving climate goals (see CLC position paper).
Ahead of the Climate Conference in Madrid in late November, the European Parliament declared a climate emergency and adopted a resolution whereby the EU should set a long-term climate goal of carbon neutrality by 2050 and tighten the 2030 target to -55% instead of the current target of -40%. The European Council reached agreement on the objective of carbon neutrality at its meeting on 12 December. However, one member State stated that it could not, at that stage, commit to implementing the climate objective.
CLC attended the Climate Conference in Madrid and gave presentations on climate actions taken by citizens in Finland and on the need to have more systematic solutions. Little was achieved at the Climate Conference, but even though expectations were not met, the conclusions of the conference allow for an ambitious baseline and calculation system for an international market mechanism. During the second week of the Climate Conference, a considerable number of businesses – 177 operating in 36 countries – with a market capitalisation of EUR 2.8 billion announced their commitment to the 1.5°C goal and joined the UN’s campaign. In 2020, the parties to climate negotiations are expected to raise their targets and the 2020 Climate Conference in Glasgow will be critical in this respect.
The European Green Deal in practice will mean 50 new legislative initiatives over the following two years. A proposal (including the goal of climate neutrality for 2050) for a European Climate Law will be submitted in March. Other major initiatives to be announced in March include the EU’s industrial strategy, the circular economy action plan and biodiversity strategy. In summer 2021, the plan is to reform key legislation to meet the climate neutrality goal (including the Emission Trading Directive, the Renewable Energy Directive and the LULUCF Regulation).
Number of members, operations and finances
In 2019, fourteen new organisation and four private members joined CLC. The new member organisations are Alexander Incentives, Elisa, Fiskars, the University of Helsinki, Huhtamäki, the Finnish Commerce Federation, Korkia, the City of Lahti, the Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK), Service Sector Employers Palta, Pöyry, Sanoma, the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) and YIT. The new private members are Miapetra Kumpula-Natri, Leo Stranius, Esko Aho and Cary Krosinsky. At year-end 2019, the Coalition had 63 member organisations and 25 private members.
The Coalition held two meetings in 2019. The Coalition’s statutory spring meeting was held on 15 May 2019 and the autumn meeting on 20 September 2019. The autumn meeting elected two new members to the Board: Jukka Mäkelä, Mayor, and Kati ter Horst, Senior Vice President, Paper Division, Stora Enso. Jaakko Eskola (Wärtsilä), Pekka Lundmark (Fortum), Risto Murto (Varma), Jorma Ollila and Henrik Ehrnrooth, who continues to chair the Board, were elected to the Board.
CLC’s operations were financed primarily by membership fees. Income from membership fees, grants and other sources in 2019 amounted to EUR 530,190.00.
Action plan targets and their achievement
In 2019, CLC had three flagship projects: 1) Civic engagement and proactive procurement, 2) Effective carbon pricing and 3) Nature-based solutions to climate change.
Civic engagement and proactive procurement
Household choices account for as much as 68 per cent of Finland’s consumption-based carbon footprint. This is why CLC has chosen civic engagement and proactive procurement as a key focus area. A key effort in this area is the annual Zero Emissions Day held on 21 September 2019 and which highlights the role of schools and businesses in enabling more climate-friendly choices for consumers. The Zero Emissions Day in 2019 was the biggest to date, with 29 member companies participating.
Effective carbon pricing
CLC strives to encourage the EU to develop a more systematic solution to emissions trading by, for example, extending and strengthening the emissions trading system (ETS) while achieving a more long-term approach and improving the predictability of the system to support and encourage major investments in decarbonisation. In 2019, CLC, together with its counterparts in Sweden, Norway and Denmark, drafted a call-out to the EU for a more ambitious climate policy. The call-out details three key objectives for EU leaders:
- Set a target for achieving net-zero emissions at the latest by 2050 or earlier taking the IPCC findings into account.
- Agree on a binding carbon budget for GHG emissions.
- Revise and align the 2030 and 2040 targets with the net-zero target.
Nature-based solutions to climate change
The role of carbon sinks in forests and agricultural lands is crucial in climate change mitigation and was further highlighted by the IPCC report. CLC supported the project set up by Pöyry Management Consulting (now Afry) to create a reliable and accurate satellite-based system for calculating carbon sinks. The CLC considers such a system to be a necessity for including natural carbon sinks or forest-based offsets in the EU ETS.
In 2019, CLC had nine theme groups: Carbon Footprint and Handprint, ICT, Circular Economy, Civic Engagement, Construction, Energy, Finance, Forest and Transport. The theme groups provide members with opportunities to network and learn from each other and featuring visiting experts.
Carbon Footprint and Handprint
The objective of the Carbon Handprint and Footprint theme group is to follow national and international programmes/initiatives to decrease carbon emissions and to contribute and share good practices quantification, mitigation and communication. The group’s facilitator in 2019 was Tiina Pajula from VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.
The Group’s most important outcomes over the past five years have been the active promotion and monitoring of Science Based Targets (SBT), the setting of the Product Environment Footprint (PEF) and the Carbon Law as the Board’s target. The group has assisted the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra in the planning of the Carbon Game is On! report, devised and designed a toolkit that helps companies to strive for carbon neutrality, and supported the Office of the President of the Republic to reduce its carbon footprint by two thirds by 2024.
In spring 2019, the group launched a carbon handprint challenge where participating organisations can calculate the positive climate impacts of using a product or service compared to other products or services in the same category. The group offers organisations participating in the challenge peer and expert support. VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Lappeenranta University of Technology created a method for calculating the carbon handprint.
The theme group’s main objectives for 2020-2024 are to support the Finnish Government and the EU in implementing the handprint method and maximising carbon handprints to promote the science-based 1.5°C target and to support solutions to include the carbon footprints of greenhouse gas emissions in private and public procurement criteria. All the objectives above are promoted at the national, Nordic and EU level.
The objective of the ICT theme group is to help CLC members to discover and utilise the opportunities created by information technology in curbing and mitigating climate change. The group started in spring 2019, when it was chaired by Virpi Hyytiä from IBM. At the end of the year, chairmanship was divided between Hyytiä and Vesa Siitari from Atea.
Meetings in 2019 focused on exchanging information on best practices, including block chains, and on planning the group’s activities.
The theme group’s objectives for 2020-2024 are to develop an EU level or global ICT-based circular economy operating system together with the Circular Economy theme group, to explore and propose potential improvements in how information technology can add value to the EU Green Deal, measure IT’s carbon footprint and seek ways to reduce it, and to act as a platform for member organisations to increase awareness of IT solutions to monitor greenhouse gas emissions and reduce carbon footprint.
The Circular Economy (CE) theme group exists to help CLC members discover circular business opportunities and implement CE business models by offering information, support and new initiatives to take part in as well as to serve as a forum for dialogue and exchanging ideas. The group’s facilitator was Daniel Kaufmann from the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra who resigned the post at the end of the year when he left to take up new duties in an organisation outside CLC.
The group’s most important outcomes over the past five years have included studying the Ex Tax project and supporting the preparation of Sitra’s national roadmap to a circular economy and piloting the Circular Economy Playbook.
In 2019, the group’s activities were changed to a cross-cutting theme to support other theme groups. Group members were invited to the World Circular Economy Forum, WCEF, which was held in Helsinki on 3-5 June. The WCEF brought together around two thousand circular economy thinkers from around the world to discuss how the transition to a circular economy could be scaled.
The theme group’s objectives for 2020-2024 are to support Finland’s national economy work, cooperation with Sitra’s circular economy themes as well as to develop and support the ICT-based circular economy operating system together with the ICT theme group.
The objective of the Civic Engagement theme group is to encourage citizens to reduce their carbon footprints. Sari Siitonen from CLC served as the group’s facilitator and at the end of the year, chairmanship was transferred to Ari Nissinen at the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE).
The group’s most important outcomes over the past five years have included supporting the development and launch of the Citizen’s Climate Pledge, ideation of the study for Sitra’s Lifestyle Test and 100 Smart Ways to Live Sustainably as well as supporting the Zero Emission Summit at the Climate Week NYC 2017, the idea for the Korean Green Credit Card report and support for reporting preparation.
The 2019 Zero Emissions Day organised by the group attracted more participants than in earlier years. A total of 29 member organisations ran their own campaigns for their customers, staff or other stakeholders. In addition, many organisations also delivered outreach initiatives with local schools. The Zero Emissions Day event for schools was organised in cooperation with Economy and Youth TAT, the Finnish National Agency for Education and Pohjois-Tapiola Upper Secondary School. CLC, SYKE and VTT continued planning the Nordic project “Citizen empowerment to mitigate climate change in Nordic countries”. At the beginning of 2019, SYKE assumed the main responsibility for preparing project planning and funding.
The theme group’s objectives for 2020-2024 include developing a citizen’s climate friendly concept, developing consumption-based emissions measurement as Nordic cooperation, encouraging public purchasers to use carbon footprint as a criterion for selection in competitive tendering, developing a Green Credit Card (with bonuses for low-carbon choices) as Nordic cooperation, increasing the climate awareness of Finnish consumers and supporting the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) secretariat in mapping and sharing best practices.
The Construction theme group focuses on new solutions and assessment methods for low-carbon construction. In 2019, the group’s facilitator was Henrik Suikkanen from Demos Helsinki.
The group’s most important outcomes over the past five years have been studying the carbon footprint assessment method of buildings developed by the Finnish Ministry of the Environment and sharing information with group members.
The theme group’s objectives for 2020-2024 are to support the carbon footprint assessment of buildings and if necessary to launch a project to create uniform planning criteria taking into account adaptation to climate change, to design a systematic system for the construction sector for the EU and to identify and map at the global level ways in which buildings can be made more effective carbon sinks.
The Energy theme group focuses on developing a smart, flexible and low-carbon Nordic energy market. When the group’s facilitator Kaisa Hernberg switched to new duties, she was succeeded by Sari Siitonen, climate expert at CLC.
The group’s most important achievements over the past five years include initiating the Smart & Clean Foundation, forming the idea for St1’s Deep Heat project together with Fortum and the City of Espoo, preparation of the Nordic energy project, supporting the preparation of the Nordic West Office’s Stronger together: the future of the Nordic energy markets report, and serving as an expert in the IEA Finland 2018 report.
In 2019, the group focused on studying new research data and new perspectives on flexible energy markets. Topics at meetings include wind and solar power, new business models and e-transport.
The theme group’s objectives for 2020-2024 are the planning of a systematic solution – including the heating and cooling of buildings, energy storage and the deployment of e-vehicles – as part of CLC’s proposal to the EU. In addition, the group will promote CLC’s initiative for a flexible Nordic energy market and study and identify ways of promoting the commercialisation of revolutionary solutions such as Power-to-X technology.
The group’s most important outcomes over the past five years include the creation and initiation of a climate risk tool. MetOffice implemented the project together with Fortum and the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra. An assessment report of the climate impacts of the Helsinki Stock Exchange was implemented in partnership with Sitra, South Pole Group and Nasdaq Helsinki.
In 2019, the group focused on carbon pricing, the taxonomy developed in the EU, emissions trading in California and in particular on the so-called TCFD reporting framework developed by the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures.
The group encourages member organisations and all other companies to integrate the TCFD framework into strategic planning and reporting. To accelerate this, the group launched a TCFD challenge for member companies. The group acts in an expert role in a Nordic civic engagement group project, which seeks to develop ways to reward low-carbon choices.
The theme group supports the design of CLC’s systematic solution. In 2021, a research project will be undertaken with the aim of describing the balance of government finance income and expenditure flows in a country that has achieved carbon neutrality.
Set up in 2019, the Forest theme group focuses on accelerating the development of the forest carbon measurement and accounting platform (Biocarbon Monitoring Platform). Other focus areas include forest offsets and related market-based instruments, as well as sustainability and consumer/end-user perspectives. The group’s facilitator was Petteri Pihlajamäki from AFRY Management Consulting.
The theme group’s objectives for 2020-2024 are to support the Biocarbon Monitoring Platform project and forest-related market-based instruments and to propose improvements relating to forests for the EU’s Green Deal. Other objectives will be identified during 2020.
The objective of the Transport theme group is to help CLC members to jointly develop and offer solutions for reducing carbon emissions from transport and traffic. Together with the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra and the Smart & Clean Foundation among others, the group has designed the Helsinki Metropolitan Area BioSata project, where buses, heavy equipment and trucks in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area will transition to using biofuels based on waste and residues.
In 2019, the group developed a pan-Nordic platform for testing and implementing clean, carbon-neutral transport solutions, the setting of common targets and creation of a co-Nordic market for biofuels, and promoted the development of e-transport and its infrastructure integration with the general electricity system. The group supported the Ministry of Transport and Communications’ Transport Climate Policy ILMO, which planned solutions to achieve carbon-free transport in Finland by 2045. The group’s facilitator was Juhani Laurikko from VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.
The theme group’s objectives for 2020-2024 include low-carbon solutions for air and maritime traffic as well as the launch of Power-to-X development projects.
In 2019, CLC launched two challenges for its members: the carbon handprint challenge and the TCFD-challenge. These challenges seek to provide peer support to the climate work of CLC members while strengthening their climate leadership and competitiveness. The idea is that the organisations will inspire and learn from each other.
Solutions with positive climate impacts are in great demand worldwide. Finland is a leader in the development of the carbon footprint concept and CLC members VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and LUT University have developed a methodology to calculate carbon handprint. Neste and Outotec have already calculated, validated and published carbon handprints for their own products. The carbon handprint challenge is being promoted in conjunction with meetings of the Carbon Footprint and Handprint theme group. Sari Siitonen from CLC is responsible for promoting the challenge.
The TCFD challenge is being promoted in conjunction with meetings of the Finance theme group. Timo Tyrväinen is responsible for promoting the challenge from CLC’s side.
During the first half of the year, the Coalition presented a number of new activities. CLC launched an employee experience network to develop how to transform climate issues into the lifecycle of employment relationships. Facilitator of the network is Rauha Bato-Liukkonen, SVP, Human Resources, at Helen. The network met twice during the year and is part of CLC’s ongoing efforts to improve communication with members and stakeholders.
A general election was held in Finland in April 2019 and CLC worked actively to influence the programme of the recently elected government. CLC made proposals for the role of public procurements, EU policy and carbon sinks. Together with Finnish industrial associations, the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, CLC and Smart & Clean Foundation held a panel discussion ahead of the election for candidates of Finland’s six largest parliamentary parties. At the turn of 2018-2019, CLC, together with Bioenergy Association of Finland, Sitra, the Finnish Environment Institute (SYKE) and the Central Association of Chimney Sweeps, launched a campaign to reduce black carbon. The winners of the competition and their innovations to reduce black carbon in the atmosphere were announced at the Arctic Council Ministerial Meeting in Rovaniemi in May. The winners were Neste, NunnaUuni and Wärtsilä. In addition, the Central Association of Chimney Sweeps were received a commendation for their work. When visiting homes, chimney sweeps taught Finns how to use their fireplaces, stoves and heating boilers in a way that minimises emissions but maximises energy efficiency.
During the second half of the year, the Coalition published a position paper in which it calls for the EU to develop a more systematic market-based solution that
- ensures emissions reductions and enable carbon sinks
- is predictable in the long term and withstands political power changes
- creates an adequate price for carbon dioxide emissions
- ensures economic efficient development where the cheapest solutions are implemented first
- is market based and technology neutral
- can be integrated internationally
- can be rapidly adjusted to needs
- covers a large proportion of emissions and takes into account carbon sinks, carbon storage and substitute alternatives
- uses revenue from carbon dioxide emissions to accelerate the introduction of low-carbon solutions and green business
- enables a fair transition towards climate neutrality
- offers a mechanism to combat carbon leakage and promote equal competition.
CLC members participated in preparing the paper which was presented to the Coalition’s official members on 2 September at Kone’s manor house. In October, CLC, together with the Confederation of Finnish Industries (EK) and the Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK), held an event for 150 persons at which systematic solutions to climate goals were discussed. Keynote speakers were Richard Corey, Executive Officer, California Air Resources Board, and Elina Bardram, Head of International Relations, Directorate General for Climate Action, European Commission. The outcome of the event was that a carbon budget, carbon pricing and the monitoring of carbon hand- and footprint at the EU level are needed for a systematic solution.
At the end of the year, CLC set up an Agriculture Think Tank for the top management of member organisations and experts. Matti Rihko served as the group’s facilitator.
In 2019, CLC’s international partner network grew and CLC cooperated with reports, event production, statements, letters and campaigns with, for example, CAN Europe, CLG Europe, CONCITO, Copa-Cogeca, econsense, epe-enterprises pour l’environment, The Haga Initiative, ICC Germany, Metals Pro Climate and Zvei – Die Elektroindustrie. In addition, CLC is part of the EIT Climate KIC network and carries out expert cooperation with California Air Resources Board.
By-laws and members
The Coalition’s by-laws can be found in Appendix 1.
In 2019, fourteen new organisation and four private members joined CLC. At the end of the year, the Coalition had 63 organisation members and 25 private members.
At 31 December 2019, the Coalition’s organisation members were:
Bank of Åland
Castren & Snellman
Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK)
City of Espoo
City of Pori
City of Porvoo
City of Tampere
City of Turku
Finance Finland (FFI)
Finnish Commerce Federation
Finnish Environment Institute (Syke)
Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra
L & T
Service Sector Employers Palta
Technology Industries of Finland
University of Helsinki
University of Turku
VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland
Åbo Akademi University
There were 25 private members: Esko Aho, Ben Banerjee, Louis Blumberg, Ian Dunlop, Henrik Ehrnrooth, Juhani Eskola, Allen Hershkowitz, Jaana Husu-Kallio, Tapio Kanninen, Cary Krosinsky, Pertti Korhonen, Markku Kulmala, Miapetra Kumpula-Natri, Kari Mäkinen, Jorma Ollila, Anneli Pauli, Sirpa Pietikäinen, Matti Rihko, Raimo Sailas, Leo Stranius, Petteri Taalas, Timo Tyrväinen, Risto Volanen, Veikko Välilä and Anders Wijkman
CLC member companies represent more than half the market capitalisation of Nasdaq Helsinki.
The Coalition’s statutory annual meeting was held on 20 September 2019. Two new members were elected to the Board: Jukka Mäkelä, Mayor of Espoo, and Kati ter Horst, Senior Vice President, Paper Division, Stora Enso.
Henrik Ehrnrooth, Jaakko Eskola (Wärtsilä), Pekka Lundmark (Fortum), Risto Murto (Varma) and Jorma Ollila continue to serve on the Board.
In 2019, the composition of the Board is as follows:
Henrik Ehrnrooth (Chairman)
Jorma Ollila (Vice Chairman)
Kati Ter Horst
Mari Pantsar was elected secretary to the Board, Jouni Keronen continued as Executive Director and from 27 August 2020 as CEO.
The Coalition’s statutory spring meeting was held on 14 May 2019 and the autumn meeting on 20 September 2019. The autumn meeting adopted the action plan, income and expenditure estimates, and the amounts of joining and membership fees for the following calendar year. The autumn general meeting decided to increase membership fees by ten per cent from the beginning of 2020 and from 2020 also to accept foundations and startup companies as members. New members will not be charged a fee for joining. Membership fees from the beginning of 2020 are:
● EUR 11,000.00 for large organisations (net sales of EUR 50m or more)
● EUR 5,500.00 for small organisations (net sales of less than EUR 50m)
● EUR 2,500.00 for foundations and startups
● EUR 11.00 for private members
The autumn meeting estimated income for 2020 at EUR 637,500.00 and expenses at EUR 617,000.00.
The Board held five meetings in 2019, one of which was per capsulam. The Coalition’s auditors are PricewaterhouseCoopers Oy. The principal auditor is Jukka Paunonen, Authorised Public Accountant, and the deputy auditor is Taru Mäenpää, Authorised Public Accountant.
In terms of communications, 2019 was very active and CLC’s expertise gained increasingly more favourable media visibility and publicity. As the number of members continued to grow, members’ own communication channels increased and diversified the opportunities to disseminate information about the Coalition’s work.
The Coalition’s Communications network is open for communication and corporate responsibility professionals from all member organisations and there has been a high participation rate. The network’s mission has been to profile the Coalition and its CEO in the media, to learn and share information about members’ best practices and to act as a channel to tell about CLC’s activities and goals.
The network had five meetings in 2019. The meetings are hosted each time by different member organisations, who showcase their own respective corporate social responsibility projects and discuss current news and topics affecting CLC. This year the network visited Finance Finland (FFI), Varma and the S Group. In addition, the cities of Turku and Tampere presented their climate strategies and the Gaia Group its operations. Guest speakers, including Mari Pantsar, who heads the “resource-wise and carbon-neutral society” theme area at the Finnish Innovation Fund Sitra, Piia Elonen, Helsingin Sanomat’s climate change correspondent, and Eeva Lehtimäki, political correspondent at Framilla, were also invited to the meetings.
The Communications network is chaired by Unna Lehtipuu from Framilla Finland Communications Agency. She also coordinates CLC’s press releases and media relations, together with other communications matters within the limits of two working days a month. The Coalition also emails an electronic newsletter about current affairs and activities to its members. The newsletter is coordinated by Anna Gaib. All news about membership and current events is published regularly in Finnish and English on CLC’s own website and circulated widely through social media channels.
Under the guidance of Development Director Kaisa Hernberg, a significant reform was also a revamped website, which now has English as the main language and clearly improved and added functionalities. News is also occasionally published in Finnish.
During the course of the year, the Coalition systematically built and strengthened its media relations and this has been reflected in a clear growth in CLC’s number of media hits and visibility. Management held regular meetings with various media and during 2019 background discussion events were held with the newspapers Kauppalehti, Helsingin Sanomat and Maaseudun tulevaisuus. Such meetings will continue. At these meetings, the Coalition has provided a background for its work and strengthened its role as an expert.
The Coalition featured regularly in the media throughout the year. CLC and members of the Communications network were active in disseminating about the respective organisation’s climate action on the Zero Emissions Day held on 21 September 2019 and key persons at CLC were interviewed in the media in this context.
The Coalition published the following five press releases on STT Press Services in 2019:
12 Sept 2019 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
11 Sept 2019 Climate Leadership Coalition calls for ambitious long-term climate goals and a systematic, market-driven solution
6 May 2019 Neste, Nunnauuni and Wärtsilä awarded for reducing black carbon emissions
30 April 2019 European business leaders urge EU heads of state to signal new economic direction towards net zero by 2050
27 March 2019 Finland a top country in climate solutions
There was a marked increase in the number of media hits and column space given to CLC in 2019. CEO Jouni Keronen was interviewed as an expert in an article in Finnish business magazine Talouselämä (12 May 2019) and he was guest of the week in business newspaper Kauppalehti in September 2019. CLC’s activities, its key persons and events featured prominently in six climate themed articles in leading daily Helsingin Sanomat and in four extensive climate, emissions trading and themed features on Finnish broadcasting company Yle. A number of media published articles and news also based on CLC releases. CLC invited Richard Corey, Executive Officer, California Air Resources Board, to Finland and his visit also received plenty of attention, including in Helsingin Sanomat. Also the attention received by Jouni Keronen’s and Mari Pantsar’s book Tienhaarassa supported CLC’s expertise.
CLC also received significant international visibility at the 20th Energy Globe Award held in Espoo at which a consortium of our members Fortum, St1 and Neste together with Helsinki Region Environment Services Authority HSY was a winner in the category Air with their project Geothermal Energy for the district heating of Espoo and Renewable Fuels for sustainable transportation. Not only that, but Henrik Ehrnrooth, chairman of our Board, and private member Anders Wijkman, Honorary President of the Club of Rome were awarded the Medal of Honor in recognition of their lifelong work for sustainability. There were more than 1,700 publications done from the Energy Globe Award event with over 700 million potential viewers.
Examples of hits
CLC in Helsingin Sanomat:
https://www.hs.fi/talous/art-2000006304426.html California, Richard Corey’s visit
https://www.hs.fi/ulkomaat/art-2000006243883.html Tienhaarassa. book
https://www.hs.fi/urheilu/art-2000006217317.html Sports in climate actions
https://www.hs.fi/mielipide/art-2000006030712.html Climate awakening in businesses
CLC on Yle:
https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-10722209 Companies’ readiness for climate risks (news)
https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-10759681 Big businesses calling on the EU for carbon neutrality (news)
https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-10894983 Business flights and emissions off-setting (news)
https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-10770655 Innovation prizes (news)
https://www.kauppalehti.fi/uutiset/ykn-ilmastokokous-on-hatahuuto-sanoo-suomalaisyritysten-luottomies-jouni-keronen-investoinnit-uusiutuvaan-energiaan-pitaa-viisinkertaistaa/f0db62d2-8cee-4318-9a2f-8f6264c1613e (UN Climate Summit is a cry for help says Jouni Keronen, investments in renewable energy need to be quintupled.)
https://www.talouselama.fi/uutiset/suomi-kuuluu-harvinaiseen-joukkoon-joka-on-hyotynyt-ilmaston-lampenemisesta-kuilu-maailman-rikkaiden-ja-koyhien-maiden-valilla-on-nyt-25-prosenttia-suurempi-kuin-mita-se-olisi-ilman-lampotilamuutosta/8fadc933-4884-482a-8f03-d83b323bbcdb (Finland is one of the few countries to have benefited from global warming, the gap between the world’s rich and poor countries is now 25% greater than it would be without temperature change)
Minimizing the carbon footprint
CLC reinforced its climate actions in 2019 by drafting guidelines for the organization’s staff on how to minimize emissions in traveling and event production. Emissions caused by travelling were reduced by providing a opportunity to join the theme group meetings via video connection, when possible. The catering in the events was based on low-carbon and local options.
In 2019 CLC’s employees flew a total of 19 000 kilometers within Europe, no intercontinental flights were flown. The emissions (about 1961 kg/CO2) were offset three times of their amount by UN Climate Neutral Now in a Gold Standard certified IOT Mabagas Limited power plant project in India, that converts chicken litter and residues from starch and sugar industries into renewable electricity.
The Board’s assessment of the year is that the Coalition reached and partly also clearly exceeded its targets in 2019. Prioritised flagship projects progressed to plan, the number of members grew by more than planned and the Coalition expanded both on a Nordic level and internationally. CLC’s Board is very pleased with how the Coalition has developed.