CO2-neutrality in my personal life

I would like to take the opportunity of my recent publication in BRAUWELT (see blog) to report on some personal background information. From a family point of view, the topic of climate protection and CO2 neutrality has taken on a new status , with my wife’s move from nature conservation at the city of Regensburg to climate protection in Bavaria. Since January 2021, Katharina has been part of the climate protection team at the Bavarian State Agency for Energy and Climate Protection. Almost at the same time, I started developing the ideas with Christian for PRECOGIT. This included questioning a lot of things and also reading a lot to identify the right theories and approaches. For me personally and in the context of the family, but also for PRECOCIT in the market and social context.

For example, it was a decision in the family that we have completely dispensed with a car since May 2022. Of course, also due to the good infrastructure in Regensburg (e-car sharing EARL, reasonably good public transport, decent rail connections) and the fact that we travel a lot by bike in Regensburg anyway, we manage quite well without a family or company car. After my wife became very involved with the topic of balancing and offsetting air travel, a flight on our summer holiday was not an option, so we also travelled to Brittany by ICE and TGV. The return journey is still ahead of us, but on the outward journey DB and SNCF showed themselves from their best side and we arrived at our destination station after 11 hours of travelling with a 4min. delay. We arrived at our destination station 4 minutes late. On site we have a rental car, here it doesn’t stand around 95% of the time like our last car did.

For me, these are the first small steps on the way to limiting the global warming caused by all of us (i.e. all ~8 billion people) to well below 2°K, in accordance with what 197 nations decided in Paris in 2015. Even though I am sometimes stunned by the course that politics, the economy and society are setting or not setting, I am still positive about the future. This is partly due to my fundamentally optimistic attitude, but also to my holiday reading, which I would like to recommend to you.

In “Weltuntergang fällt aus”, Jan Hegenberg explains in a very fact-based and well-researched way, but also in a way that is easy to understand and to the point, exactly that: how we can succeed in not ending up at 3°K or more, but still take the right turn onto the <2°K track. He also succeeds in debunking the often-heard concerns (“It won’t work anyway!”, “Who’s going to pay for it?”, “We don’t have any storage facilities yet and the sun doesn’t shine at night!” and, of course, “But China!”) and pointing out possible solutions.

In the book “3 Grad mehr”, edited by Klaus Wiegand, the various authors go a little deeper. Wiegand lets scientists and experts have their say, including Professors Rahmstorf and Schellnhuber. The book is divided into three parts. The first part, “Heißzeit voraus” (Hot Times Ahead), describes the consequences of a 3 degree warmer world. The second part explains how “nature-based solutions” help to prevent this and finally, in the third part “Call to Action”, it goes into the socio-political aspects and also, for example, financing.

It was a realisation for me from reading that we are all activists. We are all actively working on this, whether we are aiming for <2° or for 3° or even above. We do it through our actions in our private and professional lives.