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Juha Nurminen

Juha Nurminen – Rescuer of the Sea

The initial passions and hobbies of Juha Nurminen, such as diving and cartography, later lead to him realising the alarming state of the sea. So began the work towards a healthier Baltic Sea.

Ihminen katsoo merelle

Juha Nurminen is the founder of John Nurminen Foundation.

Juha Nurminen, the founder and chair of the Foundation’s board, became interested in the sea already as a child. Sailing, diving, and later the history of shipping and cartography were natural hobbies for Nurminen, the son of a shipowner family from Rauma. In order to preserve maritime cultural heritage for future generations, Juha decided to establish the John Nurminen Foundation in 1992.

Environmental wake-up call

An avid diver and seafarer, Juha realised the seriousness of the Baltic Sea’s eutrophication and extensive blue-green algae blooms in the late 1990s. The alarming state of the sea made him wonder if the foundation could do something to help the state of the Baltic Sea. The idea of carrying out environmental projects was born, with the aim to reduce the nutrient load on the sea and environmental risks through measurable results.

The first projects were targeted at phosphorus removal efficiency at water treatment plants in Russia. With the influence of Juha Nurminen himself, persistent work of the foundation and cooperation partners, the nutrient runoffs from emissions from the Laukaanjoki fertilizer factory were brought under control. Since, the foundation has launched 43 environmental projects of which 34 have been finished – all around the Baltic Sea. In collaboration with other stakeholders, in less than 10 years the eutrophicating phosphorus load of the Gulf of Finland alone has been cut by up to 75%

Distinguished Baltic Sea expert

Juha Nurminen has received numerous medals, awards and other commendations for his life’s work, such as the 2008 State Award for Public Information. He received the honorary title of Maritime Counsellor in 2010, and the Diver of the Year award in 2019. Juha’s passion for diving is also evident in the book Meren lumo (Enchanted by the Sea) – published by the John Nurminen Foundation – for which he took the photos himself.

Kaksi sukeltajaa
Juha Nurminen is an avid diver and photographer. Claudia, Egypt, Red Sea. 1999. Photo: Juha Nurminen

Map collector

Juha Nurminen got interested in collecting maps as a child, following in his father’s footsteps. Over the years, he has amassed a huge collection of Nordic and Baltic Sea maps, as well as old maps of the world. Juha donated his Nordic and Baltic Sea maps to the John Nurminen Foundation. The Foundation’s collection of nautical charts of the Baltic Sea region is considered to be the most important of its kind.

Juha Nurminen and books

The John Nurminen Foundation has published several books in which Juha Nurminen has been involved as an editor, writer, expert or photographer. You can buy these books from the Foundation’s website, which is, as of now, unfortunately only in Finnish!

The Baltic Sea needs your help.
It’s not yet too late to save the sea.