Cross-border cooperation against climate change

Hello everybody!

My name is Johannes and it’s been almost 3 months now since I started my IVY-experience. As a cosmopolitan person I am happy to be part of a European project being representative of the idea of collaboration and internationalism. I have just graduated from high school and so I am about to enter a new phase of my life. In order to orientate myself I am now doing a gap year. In view of the destruction of our planet by mankind in terms of the climate crisis and the exploitation of nature, also described as a new geological age – the Anthropocene -, environmental and climate protection is a highly important topic these days. Thus, after my gap year, I would like to start a study which deals with this issue. However, first of all it was my concern to gain practical experiences in this field and to contribute actively to nature conservation.

That's how it led me to the "KlimaAlps" project. KlimaAlps wants to awaken everyone's potential for climate protection and enable it to take effect. We want to draw regional attention to climate change and give the general public impetus to think and act for climate protection. In doing so, it is important to us that we build on well-founded research results and create a sustainable transfer of knowledge from research to education. In the community we create more - therefore the project team works together across countries and regions to achieve this goal.

Climate change in the Alpine region is an intensively researched area that has also been a regular feature of media coverage for years. The uncertainty of the population in dealing with the multifaceted topic and its reciprocal effects is great, justified by the fact that actual effects of climate change still remain unrecognized - i.e. invisible - by most people in everyday life.

Science is increasingly revealing the changes in nature that are already visible. KlimaAlps aims to make this visualization of climate change "on our doorstep" accessible to the general public as well.

While science demands mitigation, adaptation and transformation measures, KlimaAlps wants to awaken the climate protection potential of everyone and make it effective.

Through awareness raising and education in theory and practice, a conscious view of climate change should lead to individual changes in behavior in daily life.

Three instruments are being developed and established for this purpose:

The ClimatePedagogue

In the course of the project a climate pedagogue training will be developed. Target groups are environmental/nature educators and multipliers. After completion of the training, they should be able to make climate change in our region tangible and visible and show options for action.

The ClimateTopes

ClimateTopes are places where climate change can be made visible. They are suitable as excursion areas for groups led by climate educators as well as for independent exploration by interested visitors. Causes and consequences of climate change and measures to adapt to it are demonstrated here using various means and can be actively explored.

In addition to the KlimaTopen, the project is developing a traveling exhibition that shows where climate change is already having an impact in our homeland.

The KlimaAlps - Network

Only together we can achieve our goal - for this we are building the KlimaAlps network between science - education - policy makers and regional implementers.

The networking of the relevant actors leads to a strengthening of the perception of the topic and the knowledge transfer between research and education. Through the network, know-how and experience of the actors in the project region are bundled and brought into the implementation of the project. Constant exchange educates all actors on specific topics. Already existing thematic paths and offers are integrated in the interactive KlimaAlps map and thus made visible.

This visualization of climate change is exactly what I am working on as well. In this sense, I evaluate climate data from the ClimateTope sites and use them to create warming stripes that visualize the increase in annual mean temperatures over the period from 1961 to 2020. Furthermore, I help to organize the ClimatePedagogue-training pilot runs and make video recordings for a promotional film for the ClimatePedagogue intending to motivate people to participate in the training.

Hence, I hope that thanks to the experience I will gain, I will be more certain about what exactly I want to study and in what field of work I want to move in the future. Therefore, I am very happy that IVY offers me the opportunity to support and learn from people who already show a lot of personal commitment in the subject of climate protection!

Johannes Karrer, Interreg Project Partner at KlimaAlps project

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