Knowledge transfer :Theoretical and practical knowledge transfer on renewable energies
Number of schools :12 schools supported in Germany
Project partners :co2online non-profit limited liability company

Schools as climate protectors: atmosfair supports the energy-saving champion schools in Germany

Since 2009 atmosfair is holding partnerships for schools that participate in the nationwide climate protection contest “Energiesparmeister”. Therefore, a jury of experts is choosing one winning school for every federal state which provides a special contribution to climate protection. The sixteen federal state winning schools earn prize money of 2.500 Euros. Furthermore they get a partnership with a company that supports them during the final online-voting for the state winning price.

The Energiesparmeister-Contest is supported by the campaign “Mein Klimaschutz” from the Federal Ministry of Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety. The contest is carried out by the non-profit organization co2online. Any type of school and any age group can participate.

atmosfair supports the contest in order to make young pupils gain an early interest about renewable energy and energy efficiency. The non-profit organization is convinced that a raised awareness is the best contribution to future climate protection.

2020: New round of the “Energiesparmeister”-Contest started

On January 14th, the new round of “Energiesparmeister”-Contest started. Schools, school classes and project groups are welcome to apply with their climate protection project until mid of May. The best project from each federal state will be awarded with the “Landessieger” title along with a prize money of 2,500 euros and will run for the “Energiesparmeister Gold” title, endowed with another 2,500 euros. Furthermore, those project from last the years that could be successfully developed further, can run for another 1.000 euros and the “Sonderpreis für nachhaltiges Engagement” award.

Here is a link to a video of the competition.

2019: Carl-Friedrich-von-Siemens-Gymnasium, Berlin

The Carl-Friedrich-von-Siemens High School in Berlin-Spandau demonstrated the most convincing energy-saving commitment amongst 2019 Berlin participants. Based on their climate protection plan, the high school students implement several creative initiatives. Their school Christmas market, for example, was strictly guided by the motto of sustainability. Whether climate-friendly snacks for visitors, drinks distribution with deposit system or sale of upcycling products – the most sustainable stand received an award from the “Klima-AG”. In order to help students save resources in everyday school life and avoid CO₂, they created their own climate protection flyer. Some initiatives were especially memorable: for two weeks, the high school students collected all their packaging waste in a huge box in front of the cafeteria. The school has managed to combine fun with playful competition and was thus awarded the “Energiesparmeister” prize in 2019.

Click here for the school’s video.

2018: Warndt-Gymnasium, Völklingen

„Energy-saving Champion“ and atmosfair’s partner school 2018 is the Warndt-Gymnasium Völklingen. A well-deserved price for the students, who have been committed to climate protection for many years and have developed an impressive amount of projects.
For instance, they have banned disposable tableware and plastic bags wherever possible; they revised the school’s waste system and have been developing upcycling ideas. Furthermore, they value seasonal and regional food and have shown dedication in preserving biodiversity and biotopes through different projects and awards. In class, sustainability is a recurring theme for discussion, observed and evaluated through different disciplines.
The icing on the cake: even though every project has its own independent focus, all projects tend towards a single and common goal, and work together as a whole. They reveal just how diversified the sustainability subject can be, and – just as important – they implement concrete action into daily routines.

Click here for the school’s video.

2017: Albert-Einstein-Gymnasium, Neubrandenburg

The students of the project group „Spielpforte” (engl.: „Game Gate”) from the Albert-Einstein-Gymnasium in Neubrandenburg are committed to the theme: „Game is the highest form of research”. They use creative campaigns to help their classmates and teachers recall how to contribute to sustainability. Some students engaged in examining their own ecological footprint, derived guidelines for future actions, and presented them in role plays and videos. Others set up a climate agreement that binds all classes of their school to more climate protection. Their credo: Constant dripping wears away the stone! Therefore new projects are already being planned.

Click here for the school’s video.

2016: Stadtteilschule Barmbek, Hamburg

The pupils of the district school Barmbek impressed the jury and its patron atmosfair for two reasons: They not only pro-actively save energy and CO₂ in their own school, but are also committed to protect the global climate. With the project “Green Light for Togo” they use class hours to build solar lamps for their partners of the Kopeme microfinance group in the West African country Togo. The lamps replace environmentally harmful kerosene lamps and help users to replace the expensive and unhealthy fuel. Thus over 83 t of CO₂ emissions have been reduced during the entire project duration. With the atmosfair support of € 2500 the Hamburg pupils want to continue to push for climate protection and a sustainable use of energy.

Pupils and teachers from other schools can still learn a lot from the energy and resource saving activities of the Barmbek school. The list of environmental and climate protection measures in Hamburg is long: They have installed a rainwater harvesting system that collects rainwater on the school roof and pumps it to the school toilets (for flushing) via solar-powered pumps, a self-made attic insulation for energy cost savings, motion detectors in the buildings for efficient lighting control, waste separation, a mobility concept that enables teachers to commute between the three school locations by bike, and having established a Veggie-Day at school.

Here you can have a look at the candidature video of Barmbek school.

2015: Käthe-Kollwitz Oberschule, Potsdam

In 2001, the first photovoltaic system was installed on the rooftop of the school. To monitor and maintain the system, an energy and environmental team run by the pupils themselves was launched, which engages not only with facility maintenance, but also with other issues such as water and energy savings. But this was not enough for the Potsdam Secondary School. In 2014, the classroom walls were plastered with clay, providing not only additional insulation, but also an even more pleasant indoor climate. Afterwards the clay walls were decorated by creative students according to their ideas. Thanks to this dedicated and sustainable engagement by school management and students, the Kathe Kollwitz Oberschule was nominated 2015’s Energiesparmeister.

Here you can have a look at the schools candidature video.

2014: Grundschule Am Sonnenbrink, Stadthagen

In 2014, the elementary school in Stadthagen was recognized for its overall commitment to the environment and the children’s book that they wrote themselves “Auf der Suche nach dem Ökologischen Fußabdruck” (Looking for Your Environmental Footprint). This story is meant to introduce the serious topic of climate change to children in a playful way.
The involvement of students from Grundschule Am Sonnenbrink made a lasting impression on the jury. The elementary school students from Stadthagen have already been engaged in climate protection since 1996:
As “environmental detectives”, they monitor the school’s use of electricity and water, plant trees, collect donations for solar lamps for their partner school, plant regional vegetables, and inform the public about recycling, climate-friendly mobility, and consumption at the city’s market square.

Currently, the students are rewriting the children’s book about the concept of environmental footprints into a theater play that will include their own actions to protect the climate. They are performing the play at neighboring elementary schools. In this way, they are showing other schools that every individual can take action to protect the climate.
The next project is already being planned: a climate-friendly city map that makes note of places that serve to protect the climate.
A school that is just like the one in the book.

Click here for the school’s video.

2013: Otto-Hahn-Gymnasium, Gifhorn

In 2013, atmosfair supported the Gifhorn school’s Umwelt AG. The students from Lower Saxony were deeply involved: they are using the profits from their school’s own photovoltaic power station to support further solar projects in developing countries. Collaborating with a village in Tanzania allows the students to understand the effect of climate change in countries in the Global South firsthand. atmosfair supported the construction of a hand pump for water, which the Umwelt AG had built during their visit to the site. The principle of capacity development is paramount to the students from Gifhorn.

Click here for the school’s video.

2012: Lilli-Martius-Schule, Kiel & THEPRA-Förderzentrum, Bruchstedt

In 2012, atmosfair mentored two outstanding schools on the topic of climate protection:

The students from the Lilli-Martius-Schule in Kiel have implemented many projects to save energy in the last few years. In doing this, they have continuously gathered new ideas and experiences. The students present their ideas in their book “Nelly, der kleine Walfisch” (Nelly, the little whale) so that other schools can benefit from these experiences.
They have also designed a website to give other students tips on how to save energy. At the school, the students educate light and air experts and consult regularly with energy experts. At the moment, the students are working on a musical about energy saving.

In addition, the THEPRA funding association in Bruchstedt, where climate protection and environmental conservation has been part of the daily curriculum for the last 14 years, greatly impressed the expert jury with its environmentally friendly measures. Clearly, the association earned the privilege of being mentored by atmosfair.

2011: Heinrich-Mann-Schule, Berlin

In 2011, atmosfair mentored the Heinrich-Mann-Schule from Berlin-Neukölln.
The students’ involvement made a lasting impression on the jury. Raising awareness about energy saving and the relationship between energy production and climate change among children their own age was especially important to the students from the Heinrich-Mann-Schule.
To achieve this, they performed survey on the lighting situation in the students’ houses and analyzed the data during an open information day. For this, they wrote a rap and set it to music, set up a photo competition, and produced an audiobook in order to make people aware of opportunities for improvement. Their diverse projects appealed to many youth and won them over for climate protection.

2010: Surheider Schule, Bremerhaven

In 2010, atmosfair supported the Surheider Schule from Bremerhaven in the energy-saving championship. The school began operating the small wind turbine named “Whisper 100” to produce climate-friendly electricity for the school.
The school’s own funding association and atmosfair jointly financed the installation. Under optimal wind conditions, the small wind turbine produces up to 900 W of power and helps the school to save energy, CO₂, and money, of course.

Click here for the school’s video.

2009: Gymnasium Neutraubling

In 2009, atmosfair financially supported the school in building a solar energy system.

The installed photovoltaic system produces around 1000 kWh of climate-friendly electricity per year. The system is operated, maintained, and supervised by the school’s own climate protection and solar funding association.
The association’s own photovoltaic panels on the roofs of Gymnasium Neutraubling and Realschule Obertraubling now total more than 36 kWp. The panels produce over 38,000 kWh of climate-friendly solar electricity per year. This covers the equivalent energy requirement of around 12 households, or almost 14% of Gymnasium Neutraubling’s electricity requirements.
The photovoltaic panels help the environment by saving around 20,000 kg CO₂ annually.

Your contact at atmosfair

Bernhard Ellmann
Manager Climate Mitigation Projects
M.A. Philosophy
+49 (0) 30 120 84 80 - 61