Tohka-klubin ideoima ja kokoon juoksema ympäristöseminaari Valkeakosken Tietotien lukiolla 7. huhtikuuta oli menestys maan kärkikaartiin kuuluvine puhujineen ja innokkaine opiskelijoineen. Seminaarin isä, veli Arto Elo, on kirjoittanut seminaarista artikkelin, joka julkaistaan aikanaan Rotary-Nordenissa, mutta klubimme jäsenet voivat lukea sen etukäteen seminaarikielellä eli englanniksi:

Environmental seminar for students in Valkeakoski, Finland

Environmental and climate change issues have been at the forefront almost in the whole world, at least in the western hemisphere. Especially the young people are worrying about the future developments which are more or less uncertain. The Rotary movement has also recognized the situation and the environment is one of our focus areas.

Valkeakoski-Tohka RC together with Valkeakoski RC and Valkeakoski school society organized the Environmental Seminar for Students in Valkeakoski Campus on April 7, 2022. Nearly 100 participants came from Häme University of Applied Sciences, Valkeakoski Tietotie Upper Secondary School and Valkeakoski Vocational College. A special guest was Rotary district 1390 governor Eila Parviainen. The program was conducted in English because participants included a number of international students. The seminar was continuation of the Conflict Resolution Seminar for Students, which rotarians organized together with CMI in 2019.

The objective of the seminar was to give the students and all of us a most up-to-date, professional and unbiased information package about the factors affecting our environment, especially our climate, and get the students’ own suggestions for actions to improve the situation.

Valkeakoski City Mayor Minna Uschanoff opened the seminar. The speakers and their topics were:

  • Kati Ruohomäki (Sr Specialist, Confederation of Finnish Industries) ”EU’s energy and climate package – new actions for everyone”
  • Markku Ollikainen (Chairman of the Finnsh Climate Change Panel) ”Path to carbon neutrality in Finland”
  • Oras Tynkkynen (Sr Adviser, SITRA – Finland’s Innovation Fund) ”Climate-positive Valkeakoski – Why and How?”
  • Petteri Taalas (Secretary General, WMO – World’s Meteorological Organization) ”Climate change facts and mitigation perspectives”.

Speakers present at the seminar from the left: Minna Uschanoff (Valkeakoski City Mayor), Kati Ruohomäki (Confederation of Finnish Industries), Markku Ollikainen (The Finnish Climate Change Panel) and Oras Tynkkynen (Sitra). Professor Petteri Taalas, Secretary General spoke live from WMO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

The afternoon was reserved for the group work of the students working with 9 different topics and the presentation of the results. All presentations were recorded and they were published in a 72-page seminar publication. The book was distributed to the schools, the city of Valkeakoski, the Rotary society and 20 local businesses which supported the seminar.

The idea for the seminar came about within Valkeakoski-Tohka RC  in the spring of 2021 and the club has also been the project leader.

Organizing committee from the left: Mikael Rekola, project secretary (Valkeakoski-Tohka RC), Arto Elo, project leader (Valkeakoski-Tohka RC), Terhi Tammivirta (Häme University of Applied Sciences), Mikko Siirilä (Valkeakoski Vocational College), Jaana Leppä (Valkeakoski Tietotie Upper Secondary School), Urpo Jokinen (Valkeakoski-Tohka RC) and Mika Halonen (Valkeakoski RC).

Link to student videos.

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