Go Back

Harri Lammi

Harri Juhani Lammi
Born December 3, 1971

Master of Arts, University of Helsinki (theoretical philosophy)
Phd student in environmental politics 2001–05, University of Tampere

Senior campaigner (carbon) 2014–, adisor to the Chinese climate and energy campaign 2011–14, manager of the China Office’s carbon campaign team 2011–13, Programme Director of Greenpeace Nordic 2006–11, energy campaign officer 2000–02, Greenpeace
Part time lecturer 2003, researcher 2000, University of Tampere

Founder and board member of the windpower company Lumituuli Oy 1998–2000
Board member 1998–99, Friends of the Earth Finland
Vice-chairman 1997–98, Dodo ry

Photo: Salla Tuomivaara
Written by Harri Lammi (Tiia Niemelä, ed.)
Translated by Matthew Billington

A brighter future ahead?

Climate change is a huge issue, but it suffers the difficulty of understanding the scale of the problem. The debate centres on personal choices or the climate poker played between states. Nevertheless, it is only the connections between them that will precipitate change. In recent years I have been campaigning against the global use of coal, a level at which both the activity of NGOs, states and companies is visible.

Action is being taken regarding the climate partly because people have begun to demand change, which has created a space for states and businesses to act. In the US local NGOs stopped the building of new coal-fuelled power plants and pushed through new state climate policies at a time when the Federal Government’s climate policy had been deadlocked for decades. China is performing a complete U-turn in its energy policy now that the increasingly affluent middle class has begun to demand cleaner air.

Harri Lammi with the Beijing coal team, 2012. Greenpeace has raised the profile of air pollution and the consumption of coal in China’s environmental debate.

Europeans have pioneered the use of renewable sources of energy such as wind and solar power, with global consequences. The enthusiasm of German citizens for solar power prompted Chinese manufacturers to make massive investments, which lowered the price of solar power by two thirds between 2009 and 2013. Europe feels that it is treading water, but on the other hand it has achieved its climate targets ahead of time. The continent is capable of a new wave of climate policy and the development of a new, low-emissions society which could simultaneously direct European industry towards the development of clean technology.

The state of climate policy, as I see it, is quite positive. It is likely that carbon emissions from global energy production will begin to fall this year, as carbon consumption in the big carbon consumer regions of China, the US and Europe is simultaneously falling, for the first time in decades. This is no passing trend, but there is still a question mark over the pace of change, and the timetable for reducing emissions is all important from the perspective of the future of the climate. The present situation could result in the agreement of stricter climate policy among polluter countries and the squeezing of emission trends downwards.

Go Back