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With Art & Culture against Climate Change

Gelsenkirchen is acting as a representative of the Ruhr area in the C-Change European network with the objective of raising awareness of climate change and ensuring that sustainability strategies are given greater priority in cities and regions. In order to transfer the impulses from the European to a regional level, an URBACT Local Group has been set up, which discusses measures for sustainable urban development in the Ruhr area in regular meetings – ecce is participating, too!

[Translate to Englisch:] © C-Change
[Translate to Englisch:] © C-Change


C-Change - Arts & Culture Leading Climate Action in Cities

The city of Gelsenkirchen is part of the European C-Change transfer network which, together with five other cities (Manchester, Mantova, Wrocław, Šibenik and Águeda), intends to transfer the climate-friendly sustainability strategies of best-practice models to the Ruhr area, and to raise awareness of climate change – this forming part of the URBACT EU programme. In this case, the city of Manchester is acting as a successful example as, since 2010, a network of more than 30 representatives of art and culture, city administration and sustainability has developed in this former industrial city, which has gradually set a joint plan for climate-friendly urban development – and with success! Since 2011/12, Manchester has recorded an average CO2 reduction of 7% per annum and it aims to become carbon-neutral in 2038. The Manchester Arts Sustainability Team (MAST) consists of galleries, theatres, cultural centres and environmental organisations, and the University of Manchester, but also big players, such as the BBC which is located there.


URBACT Local Group Ruhr area

Taking its inspiration from Manchester, the C-Change network is to examine successful concepts and measures for their transferability whilst, at the same time, involving and mobilising regional actors in order to apply the impulses from Manchester and the European partnership specifically to their own respective regions. To help achieve this, representatives of art and culture, the city administration and environmental protection regularly meet at the URBACT Local Group (ULG) in the Ruhr area. The first meeting took place on the 25th April 2019 at the Halfmannshof in Gelsenkirchen.


The cultural  and environmental  departments of the city of Gelsenkirchen have issued invites to the first meeting of the ULG on the 24th May 2019. Together with the climate protection officer and the city’s climate protection manager, representatives of the Regionalverband (Regional Association) Ruhr (RVR) and of institutions, networks and actors from the arts and culture in Gelsenkirchen, an introduction to the current C-Change objectives is to be given and the status of the Ruhr area explored: Where do the Ruhr area cities and the represented institutions stand as regards their own work on climate protection and sustainability? Which approaches for sustainability strategies already exist in the art and culture scene and which topics are particularly controversial in the region? After the participants share their experiences and insights, the main question will be: how can art and culture providers, producers and organisers, but also artists and creative people, theoretically and practically incorporate climate protection into their own work, and what form do sustainable urban development strategies for the Ruhr area take?

These questions will be on the ULG’s agenda during the next few months and will be discussed – also with a view to the RVR’s Initiative Klimametropole (Climate Metropolis Initiative) RUHR 2022

The starting point of the work is a regional appraisal, which serves to ascertain the current status of climate protection, resource conservation and sustainability in the cultural and creative scene. We will keep you posted about further actions and developments of the partnership.