In collaboration with Yokohama, Nagano and Obuse in Japan, the City of Turku held a video competition with a climate theme for young people. The entries to the competition depicted life according to the objectives of the Paris Climate Agreement in artistic video clips.

Photo: Screen capture from the ‘Three generations’ video. Open the video in YouTube.

Top three awarded

A total of 12 videos were submitted to the competition by the deadline. Experts representing the Turku Youth Council and the City of Turku awarded points to the videos, and the six videos with the highest scores were uploaded to YouTube where residents of the city had the chance to vote for their favourites by liking the videos. The final scores were a combination of points awarded by the experts and the number of likes the videos received.  

The three videos with the highest scores received awards in the competition:

  1. Three generations by Leo Brinkmann and Aliina Vegar
  2. I see | I am seen by Tuukka Remes
  3. Guardians of the globe by Lilja Alin, Bea Back, Julia Hummelin and Peppi Pulkkinen

The goal of the competition was to provoke thoughts on our own choices

The Paris Climate Agreement set a goal to limit global warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius. To achieve this goal, societies face an unprecedented need for change in terms of energy consumption in particular. Fossil fuels must be given up, and production must increasingly adopt solutions from circular economy.

What can we as individuals do to tackle this huge challenge? It is essential to ensure that our way of life does not cause excessive carbon dioxide emissions. To achieve a 1.5-degree lifestyle, we must make choices in our everyday lives that reduce emissions. However, there are many ways of living sustainably. One relies on technology and replaces all their machines and devices with low-emission alternatives while another person strives to give up unnecessary consumption.

Desire to inspire action encouraged participation

The winning entry of the competition is thought-provoking. As its title suggests, ‘Three generations’ is a story of climate change and the thoughts it provokes from the perspective of people of three generations. The jury of experts praised in particular the high quality, intimacy and thought-provoking nature of the video.

One of the authors of the winning entry, Leo Brinkmann, says that his motive in entering the competition was to provoke thoughts in the viewers and to incite in them a need to start behaving in a more climate-friendly manner. In his opinion, the problem is not the lack of information; people know what they should do, but for some reason, they do not behave that way.

“There is no point in wallowing in disaster, and it is not a sin to live your life. As individuals, we can influence our own lives – in fact, that is what we have the most control of. People must become aware of the fact that as living, biological beings on earth, everything we do consumes resources. Consumption is inevitable, because people eat and defecate, and need commodities. The question is, how much and in what manner. It would be good to realise that you are responsible for every single thing that your actions cause, or do not cause. An emotional connection to the world creates a feeling of responsibility that leads to a desire to take action. It is also empowering to notice how the things you do actually matter. I behave in a certain manner because I want to behave that way.”

In his own life, Brinkmann considers the impact his behaviour has on the climate. The most important decisions are sustainable choices in terms of food, travel, energy consumption and acquisition of products. He buys things second hand or borrows what he needs, avoids over-heating his flat, eats food that produces minimal emissions and plans his travels to allow him to spend a long time at the destination and pays voluntary compensation fees if he has to fly there.

A compilation of videos from Japan and Turku will be presented in the UN climate change conference

To coincide with the competition in Turku, similar competitions were also held in Yokohama and the Nagano and Obuse region in Japan. Nagano and Obuse are collaborating with Turku in the IUC – International Urban Cooperation climate initiative, which is how the two cities got the idea from Turku. Yokohama, on the other hand, heard about the idea from a global network of sustainable cities and wanted to hold a similar competition.

The best videos have also been selected in Yokohama as well as Nagano and Obuse.

A compilation of the videos submitted to the competitions in Turku, Yokohama, Nagano and Obuse will be produced for the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) with support from the international network of cities ICLEI.

Top videos from Yokohama, Nagano and Obuse

1. Three generations by Leo Brinkmann and Aliina Vegar

2. I see | I am seen by Tuukka Remes

3. Guardians of the globe by Lilja Alin, Bea Back, Julia Hummelin and Peppi Pulkkinen