Creating a better climate

Our goal: Climate neutrality by 2035, embedded in law. Using the power of civil society.

In the Paris Climate Agreement, Germany committed itself to working with the international community on limiting global warming to 1.5 degrees. Scientists agree that this is only possible if our country turns climate neutral by 2035 at the latest. Yet right now Germany is on a different course: current climate policy means we are heading for global warming of more than two degrees.

Therefore GermanZero, together with experts, scientists, and citizens, has developed a 1.5-degree legislative package. It is the first and only complete solution to make Germany climate neutral by 2035. Fair. Effective. Measurable.

Now we are mobilizing citizens all over Germany with great success. Our volunteers are advocating for effective climate legislation on the federal level and are initiating the transformation of cities and regions towards climate neutrality by 2035.

Our approach to the 1.5-degree limit

Combining expertise and mobilization

We have a three-pronged approach in order to reach climate neutrality by 2035: Firstly, we've formulated the necessary measures for a climate neutral Germany in our 1.5-degree legislative package. Secondly, we advocate for the implementation of these measures with the federal government and parliament. Thirdly, we initiate local voluntary teams in cities and regions all over Germany and help local authorities take active measures towards climate neutrality.

We combine our policy and advocacy work with grassroots campaigning as well as collaboration with strategic partners to generate a critical mass of citizens that will send an unmistakable signal to policymakers: we want to climate-proof our future - and a clear and ambitious plan to do so.

We can master this enormous task because we can count on the support and energy of hundreds of people who want to build a future worth living for generations to come: Engaged citizens, experts from all sectors, stakeholders from business, industry, trade unions, environmental and other civil society organizations.

The Legal Way Out of the Climate Crisis

A legislative package made by people from all walks of life

In March 2022, we handed a full concept of a comprehensive legislative package to top ranking politicians of all democratic parties in parliament. It's the first complete roadmap for Germany to achieve climate neutrality by 2035. It comprises more than 200 measures for all sectors, from energy and industry to transport and construction, to agriculture and land use, calibrated to work in tandem to ensure the 1.5-degree limit is met:

We balance CO2 emissions in each sector and show which reduction measures are most effective in achieving climate neutrality and how they are interdependent. At any time, you can see how targets add up to the 1.5-degree total and how changes to one necessitate changes to others. In this way, our approach integrates all sectors and keep the 1.5-degree limit in reach.

1

legislative package with more than 200 measures for climate neutrality

has been developed in less than two years by our in-house team and more than 500 volunteers

200

Policy measures

lead the way to Germany´s climate neutrality in 2035.

262

experts

from more than 100 organizations have taken part in our workshops to review the measures for our 1.5-degree legislative package

Our team developed these measures in a participative process, together with more than 500 volunteers, including experts from all sectors. They reviewed more than 4,500 international studies, evidence sources and regulatory measures and selected the most effective at achieving climate neutrality without leaving anyone in society behind. Everyone was invited to contribute to the process through our online participation platform, the ZeroLab. Hundreds of ordinary citizens and stakeholders evaluated our proposals, especially for practicality and fairness, ensuring that as many and diverse voices were heard.

It is now up to our representatives to take legislative action and pass all the laws necessary to lead Germany to climate neutrality by 2035.

But we will not stand idly by until this happens.

Mobilization

Reversing Climate Change Together

In order for the measures from our 1.5-degree legislative package to be adopted by parliament, we need to send an unmistakable message to policymakers: that we, the German people, want a climate-proof future and we are ready to do our bit. We are mobilizing citizens across the country, supporting them to engage with policymakers, contribute to campaigns, advocate with us and our partners, and model solutions for climate-neutrality in their local areas. Through this, we strengthen civil society’s voice on climate change, and increase the number of supports for the 1.5-degree limit.

We do this by helping people to form local groups around two initiatives: the local groups of “Klimaentscheide” and the political dialogue.

“Klimaentscheide” and political dialogue

Klimaentscheide

With our “Klimaentscheide” teams, we have established a hands-on format for citizen activism with ever-growing success. Local teams of volunteers use formal participation measures - citizen petitions, citizen referendums and citizens´ consultations - to get their local administrations to adopt a plan for climate neutrality. After that, the teams work with their local authorities and other residents to develop and implement these plans. The “Klimaentscheide” teams are already at work in over 80 cities and districts, home to more than 15 million residents, doing public outreach, preparing petitions, and collecting signatures. As of mid-2022, 25 cities and regions have passed a resolution to develop a plan for climate neutrality by 2035 or even earlier. 

Further, our “Klimaentscheide” team developed the easy-to-use online tool “LocalZero”, which enables each city and community to create their individual plan to turn climate neutral.

>70

“Klimaentscheide” teams

have been established since 2020 thanks to our support

25

cities

are developing a plan for climate neutrality by 2035 or earlier, based on our support

>1000

volunteers

support us in our operational work and in our local groups

Political dialogue and advocacy

Volunteers are already active in 162 of 299 constituencies, with almost 25 local groups engaging in a direct exchange with their members of parliament and election candidates. To date, there have been more than 200 meetings. In this way, we spread our knowledge and connect more and more people to put the 1.5-degree limit and the solutions how to keep it on the agenda of every democratic party in parliament.

In addition to the dialogue our local groups engage in, our in-house team is being invited to comment on all major legislative proposals by the departments of economic affairs and climate action, transport, housing and urban development, and agriculture. 

Further, we engage citizens to participate in our online campaigns that we run regularly throughout the year, often in response to political key developments, addressing political decision-makers. More than 15,000 participants have been taking part in our campaigns since 2020. And more than 70 politicians gave us their “climate pledges” to take more ambitions to solve the climate crisis.

<70

Members of parliament

have already given us their “climate pledge“ to solve the climate crisis

162

out of 299 election districts

have local groups to drive forward climate action

50

High profile political decision-makers

Received our 1.5-degree legislative package personally

GermanZero climate referendums and local groups

Mobilizing Civil Climate Leadship

From GermanZero to a Global Scale 

Of course, the climate crisis is a global issue and needs global solutions. Our vision for a livable future is, that our work helps to achieve worldwide climate neutrality. Our 1.5-degree approach is therefore designed to be scalable to European and global levels. We will publish our full legislative package in German and, soon, in English on an open source basis with a Creative Commons License so that it can be reproduced, further developed, and distributed widely. 

We have also created a unique knowledge base of the research we carried out with all the potential legal options that could be considered as solutions to the climate crisis. We will make this knowledge base available as a digital toolbox. This will save other countries time and effort, they can pick measures from our roadmap that suit them, adapt, and implement them quickly. 

Your Donation

Together we can keep global warming within the 1.5-degree limit

If things continue as they are - especially when it comes to policy - we are heading for global warming of 3 to 4 degrees, which will have dramatic consequences. Not only would Germany fail to uphold the Paris Agreement. We would also miss the last chance for a future worth living. But together we can change that. Your donation can help us make a big difference.

Talk directly to our fundraising team about making a corporate donation: spendenteam@germanzero.de

IBAN: DE 94430609671028927402

BIC: GENODEM1GLS

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