Ilmari – Climate-Smart Traveller

The Ilmari – Climate-Smart Traveller project is part of the environmental education concerning traffic organised by the City of Helsinki's Environmental Services. Ilmari, an environmental educator, will tour Helsinki's primary schools in 2023 and offer workshops with activities for schoolchildren in the 5th and 6th grades. Ilmari can also be spotted at events for the whole family in 2023!
Lapsia rannalla

Environmental education concerning traffic in Helsinki 

Children and young people concerned about climate change often want to influence and act for the benefit of the environment and the climate. 

We organise fun and activity-filled workshops that focus on environmental education concerning traffic. In the workshops, we activate schoolchildren with a positive approach to thinking and acting in a climate and environmentally responsible manner in their transport choices. We also aim to have a wider impact on the transport habits of the whole family.

The Ilmari – Climate-Smart Traveller project has received government funding for 2023 from Traficom (the Finnish Transport and Communications Agency) for mobility guidance. In addition, the University of Helsinki is participating in the Ilmari project and providing Ilmari with MegaSense air quality sensors.

School and hobby travel

School and hobby travel is important not only from the point of view of the environment, but also from the point of view of the health of children and young people. The recommended amount of physical activity for children is 1–2 hours a day, but only about one third of comprehensive school-age children are sufficiently active. 

There are four good reasons to encourage children and young people to travel from place to placeusing muscle power: 

  1. Walking, cycling, and scooter riding, for example, help you stay healthy 
  2. Exercise stimulates the mind and helps focus 
  3. Fitness improves and so does stamina 
  4. Emissions are reduced!

Ilmari's workshops for 5th–6th graders

In the workshop, pupils will learn about the environmental impacts of transport and the theme of sustainable mobility through activity-filled guidance. Together with Ilmari, pupils will learn about the global climate impacts of traffic as well as its local impacts, especially on air quality and the acoustic environment. 

The workshop consists of a short lesson and a measurement and observation walk in the school’s local environment. During the walk, the pupils can, for example, measure the air quality in the school environment with a portable air quality sensor that accompanies Ilmari and make other important observations about the environmental impact of traffic.  

The measurement and observation walk makes the environmental impacts of traffic, which are often invisible or seem abstract, visible in a concrete way that inspires sustainable mobility.  

For teachers and educators

Here you will find materials for the Ilmari – Climate-Smart Traveller activities for free use by teachers and educators.

Tips for moving sustainably

Sustainable mobility is wonderful when you really understand it. Below are some easy tips on how to make sustainable mobility choices in your everyday life.

It is a good idea to choose the mode of transport to the destination according to the situation, taking into account the advantages and disadvantages of the alternatives. The decisive factors may be, for example, the distance of the journey, weather conditions and the need to transport goods and people. Walking and cycling are environmentally friendly and health-promoting mobility choices. Did you know that in the city, for short distances, the bicycle is also the fastest way to travel? 

It is not always a good idea to complete the entire journey with one mode of transport. Instead, you can combine walking, cycling or public transport. By leaving your car at a park and ride car park, you avoid traffic jams in the city and the need to hunt for a parking space. Combining cycling and walking during a trip adds important daily exercise to the day. 

If you need to use your own car to get around, it is a good idea to offer a ride to other people going in the same destination at the same time. Parents' time is saved when children are transported over a longer distance for their hobbies by carpooling. You can also offer a ride for longer distances in different carpooling groups on social media. 

It is a good idea to plan your own and your family's travel in such a way that you try to combine several tasks that require travelling by car on the same route. For example, it is better to drop by the store or gym when heading home from work or school, rather than leaving from home by car again in the evening. 

Smart movers may also choose not to make a trip and take advantage of remote work opportunities and remote meetings, for example! 

Contact Ilmari 

Ilmari – Climate-Smart Traveller workshops are organised by the City of Helsinki's Environmental Services. Workshops will be held in May 2023 and autumn 2023.  

Ask for more information:
Mervi Halme 
project specialist 

mervi.halme@hel.fi (Link opens default mail program) 
tel. 09 310 52 303