"The climate is changing. Are we changing too?" – this was the question members of the German Business Guild (Wirtschaftsgilde) asked themselves at their 73rd winter meeting. The meeting in Segl Maria in Switzerland lasted one week. Presentations on the IPCC's 6th Assessment Report and security risks associated with climate change set the scene before Lena Domröse from adelphi presented the EU 1.5° Lifestyles project to Guild members. Afterwards, participants played the Climate Puzzle using their personal carbon footprints they had calculated in advance.
Many wanted to "change" their lifestyles. During the puzzle game, they managed to significantly reduce their often above-average carbon footprints using new lifestyle options and reach the 2030 target associated with the Paris Agreement, or at least come significantly closer to it.
"It was eye-opening, and I learned a lot," said one participant. "The most exciting thing was to learn [about] what individual lifestyle options [can] save in terms of CO2 in a very concrete way," said another.
The nearly 40 members of the guild then discussed what changes would have to occur in structural conditions to enable them to implement low-carbon lifestyle options more easily or implement additional solutions. Various suggestions were proposed – from bans, increased prices and labelling of climate-damaging foodstuffs to more comprehensible and simplified funding options for energy-efficient renovation and cheaper and more frequent public transport.
At the end, the participants of the puzzle game discussed what they could do as entrepreneurs or private individuals to promote 1.5°-degree lifestyles. Some suggestions were avoiding business trips, being role models, and encouraging cultural changes in a professional context (e.g., a sustainable dress code involving fewer new shirts). The board of the Business Guild has consolidated these ideas and encapsulated them in a charter to help manifest the will for change of the association and its members.
Michael Lettenmeier (D-mat) and Maren Tornow (adelphi), who moderated the Climate Puzzle workshops together with Lena Domröse, were very satisfied with the event: "We reached people from all over Germany here and triggered many thought processes [that can lead to] behavioural change."
Michael Lettenmeier, D-mat and Lena Domröse, adelphi