Andreas has worked for Greenpeace Germany and International, Dresden University, Saxon State Chancellery and Oxfam Germany. At present, he is studying BA Media Research & Political Science in Dresden University.
We asked him 10 questions relevant to his role now as a Climate Tracker and here are his answers:
I joined the German Greenpeace Youth when I was 14, mostly out of curiosity. But as soon as I familiarized myself with topics such as climate change, I realized how important it is to take a stand for environmental justice. To see how devastating the effects of global warming are already today, to see how people suffer, is what made me an environmentalist. To have campaign successes and fun, but above all to meet some of the most fantastic and inspiring people I’ve ever met as part of my activities is what kept me going.
To me the most important and most interesting is cutting greenhouse gases. I am especially interested in ambitious emission cuts on the short term. There might be a long list of countries supporting a long term goal for decarbonization, but I think ambitious cuts before 2030 are even more important. The current plans to reduce emissions are not enough. That’s why I am interested the most in the so called ambition mechanism: The idea is to review all national climate protection plans every five years and make them more ambitious each time.
Germany has a common INDC with the other EU member states – 40% domestic greenhouse gas emissions reductions below 1990 levels by 2030. That’s not what we should expect from those countries who see themselves as frontrunners in climate politics: The target could be more ambitious, a 50% cut would be realistic. Furthermore, the EU target is locked in a ten years process while many countries want more flexibility and review their targets after five years to make them more ambitious. I expect more from the EU and Germany.
It is just fantastic to be part of the great climate tracker team and I could not be more excited! I think everyone brings unique perspectives and skills with him or her.
I was told that tenacity is one of my outstanding characteristics, which might be especially true if I get enough coffee. So I think I want to bring a lot of energy to the team, but also my background of years of environmental campaigning.
I think climate skeptics is the wrong term: I wouldn’t call people who doubt gravity ‘gravity skeptics’. They are science and climate deniers.
Working with climate trackers from all around the world made the catastrophic impacts of climate change much more real to me. Talking to people who lose their homes actually makes me kind of speechless, so I just want to ask climate deniers two questions: Do you really want to be responsible for this? Even without climate change, climate protection creates a cleaner and healthier environment – so why don’t you approve the measures we take?
In 2010 we campaigned against a very unsustainable energy law of Angela Merkel favoring nuclear energy and failed. This was really disappointing. The most challenging moments make you doubt if its really worth to put so much of your time and energy into political struggles – time that you could spend with your friends and family.
But I would not have met some of the most amazing people I ever met without advocacy work. I think in the end its people that keep you going. And in 2011 we managed to turn around Merkel’s energy policy from the year before.
After years of campaigning we managed to turn around Angela Merkel’s unsustainable energy policy. To celebrate this together with all the other people who have been in this struggle was just amazing and one of those moments that made me realize it’s worth fighting.
I would love to be able to give every fossil fuel lobbyist Pinocchio’s nose. That would be fun and sort out a lot of problems I think.
Sokrates, Simone de Beauvoir and John Lennon:
There would be a lot of time to talk, so I guess I would take Sokrates with me; I always wanted to talk to this guy. Simone was just a really fascinating woman and John Lennon would bring his guitar and make our evenings fun I guess.
I really love to work at night and listen to Jazz or Electro-swing while doing that. And the best thing about working at night is to go out for a run after midnight to relax. Running in the middle of the night makes me get rid of all the stress and clears my head.
Here are the articles Andreas wrote:
Inter Press Service: