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Klaus Esterluß | ClimateChamps

Climate champs – …fight climate change now, not in 10 years!

Do you feel responsible for our future? Are you tired of waiting for a breakthrough at climate conferences? If you are already taking action yourself, you are our ClimateChamp and we want to get to know you! Answer our questionnaire to become a part of our new blog series, take your chance to be nominated as a Climate Champ.

What is your name? How old are you? And where do you live?
My name is Anke Britta Schmidt. I am 18 years old and I live in Melle, which is a small city near to Osnabrück in Germany.

How does the climate change affect your everyday life in your community?
In Germany the climate change does not affect the everyday live very much. Maybe in the future prices for food will increase or the temperature will rise a bit. But it is not as dangerous as for people who live in Africa or Asia.

What trigger event led you to start fighting climate change?
For me starting to fight the climate change was a lucky coincidence. I found a note at the notice board in my school. A teacher was searching for pupils for his new study group. He wanted to train them to become climate ambassadors. I went to the first meeting and it sounded very interesting to me. So I enrolled for this course.

How exactly do you fight climate change?
I take part in the international youth project youthinkgreen ( In this project we learn very much about climate change and things one can do against it. Every group has to work on a sustainable project. Our group from Osnabrück works with children at the age of 8 to 10 years. We talk with them about climate change and general things like rubbish. At the moment we teach them the topic energy. We meet the children once per week. During our last meeting we were able to have a look at an electric car. The children were allowed to take a short ride in the cars. They had a lot of fun. Our idea is showing children very early that our environment is very important to us and that we have to safe it. Some other members of our Osnabrücker group produce their own radio broadcast show once a month. In their program they talk about environmentally topics and present things that are good for the nature – like a solar tree to charge mobile phones. They also talk about other projects from youthinkgreen or criticize bad developments in politics or in the society. There is also another part of our Osnabrücker group that had created a shopping guide. They had a look at different shops and restaurants in Osnabrück and wrote texts about these shops where you are can to buy products that are produced eco friendly. This shopping guide will be published soon.

What do you say to climate change deniers?
We are not the only human living on the earth. We will have children and they will have children, too. When we destroy the earth today we steal our future and the future of our children. Today we use a lot of chemistry, for fracking for example. If you visit the places where fracking takes place, you can easily notice bad effects like sick people or burning water. These are the terrible consequences of pumping chemicals deep into the earth to get natural gas and oil. When you look at rivers for example you can easily measure changes. You only have to compare the ordinary water level from now with the water level from twenty or more years ago. Maybe we are able to convince climate change deniers to start helping the environment. By doing this, they may start believing in the climate change.  

Worst case scenario: What do you think your city looks like 10 years from now, if no action had been taken to fight climate change?
There won’t be that many changes in Germany. In other parts of the world there will be much more problems: the sea level will rise, as well as the temperature. No human life will be possible in some parts. Maybe some refugees will come to Europe because they live in these parts of the world. This would lead to more social problems.

Best case scenario: What do you think your city looks like 10 years from now, if more and more action had been taken to fight climate change?
In Osnabrück there are plans that in 10 or 15 years there will only be electric or hybrid busses. There is also a campaign called “mobility 2030”. The aim of this campaign is that the people of Osnabrück change their city. They can make suggestions how these changes should look like. They can take photos, paint pictures, write letters or stories and film their ideas. All these ideas will be published on the campaign homepage.

Short and simple: What do you demand from your government as far as climate change is concerned?
I demand from my government that they convince countries like the United States, India and China to start to fight the climate change now, not in 10 years. If we want to save the world, there has to be taken action today not in some day in the future!

How can interested people take part in your project?
Interested people can search for a youthinkgreen group nearby or they can start their own group. If they don´t have enough time, they can participate in single activities of the groups.


August 27, 2013



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