Joint press release by the German Environment Agency and the Federal Ministry for the Environment

Climate change adaptation in Germany – specialist conference on strategies to counter heat, drought and heavy rainfall

Federal Environment Minister Svenja Schulze and UBA President Professor Dirk Messner honour winners of Blauer Kompass contest at specialist conference on German Adaptation Strategy

Blaues Logo des Wettbewerbs 2020Click to enlarge
Blauer Kompass contest
Source: Umweltbundesamt

A resilient climate change forest, urban green as a cool oasis in the middle of a hot city, climate-friendly building materials made from natural resources, and a coaching programme to assist municipalities in adapting to climate change – these are the winners of this year’s Blauer Kompass award. The projects were honoured during an online conference on climate resilience organised by the Federal Ministry for the Environment and the German Environment Agency. More than 550 registered participants discussed the implementation of the second progress report on the German Strategy for Adaptation to Climate Change.

Federal Environment Minister Svenja Schulze said, “Certain consequences of climate change cannot be avoided even with the greatest efforts in climate change mitigation. That is why it is important for Germany to adapt to these consequences. One piece of good news is that many adaptation measures will also contribute to the quality of life in Germany. This was also shown by this year's winners of the Blauer Kompass competition: Green spaces can reduce heat, protect water-permeable roads from flooding and climate-resistant forests invite their visitors to come and relax.”

Professor Dirk Messner, President of the German Environment Agency said, “This year has shown particularly clearly the remarkable adaptability of our society. With today's conference, we want to show that we as a society are able to exploit this potential for change, including in adapting to global superheating, in order to take effective precautions against climate change. The local projects in particular show how innovative people are - and the Federal Government must continue to support them in this endeavour.”

At the conference, a broad spectrum of experts from federal, state and local governments, from associations and companies, scientists and educational institutions was discussed in four sessions about ways to implement climate adaptation on the ground. The conference focused on the prevention of conflicts of use in the event of drought, nature-based solutions for dealing with heavy rain and heat in cities, health protection for groups at risk from climate change, and communication and participation in specific adaptation projects. Best practice examples from the past two years were awarded their prizes in the afternoon.

Winners of Blauer Kompass 2020

Category 1: Private and public enterprises
HanseGrand Klimabaustoffe, 27446 Selsingen – Climate-friendly building materials as a response to climate change: The development of climate-friendly building materials has led to novel, open-pored path covers. Their water and air permeability promote a positive microclimate, which is necessary in urban areas in particular.
Winner video clip (Youtube)

Category 2: Education and research institutions
Bayreuth Center of Ecology and Environmental Research (BayCEER), 95448 Bayreuth – “Klimawald Bayreuth” (climate change forest) project planted a climate-resilient in Bayreuth. By storing CO₂, it is not only a positive climate action measure but can also tolerate a temperature increase of at least 2°C. This makes it optimally adapted to changes in climate.
Winner video clip (Youtube)

Category 3: Societies, associations, foundations
Stiftung für Ökologie und Demokratie e. V., 67705 Trippstadt (Pfalz) – “KlimawandelAnpassungsCOACH RLP”: The project advises and supports selected municipalities and districts in Rhineland-Palatinate in adapting to the consequences of climate change and in integrating the issue into administrative procedures.
Winner video clip (Youtube)

Audience award
Freundes- und Förderkreis GLEKS (Eugen-Kaiser-Schule), 63452 Hanau: GLEKS is a large-scale green project of the Eugen Kaiser Vocational School, which serves as a place of learning and meeting place for the school and the district. The focus is on urban green as a real contribution to sustainable urban development.
Winner video clip (Youtube)

Umweltbundesamt Hauptsitz

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