His presentation dealt with the effects of climate change on the threat of storm tides along the German coast. He captivated his audience of 250 guests, made up of fellow researchers, politicians, bureaucrats and business people.
Further scientific subjects addressed by the conference were methods and the explanatory power of models (Prof. Daniela Jacob, Climate Service Center) as well as the effect of climate change on ecosystems (Dr. Ingrid Kröncke, Senckenberg Institute Wilhelmshaven). In both presentations and discussion workshops, the challenges we face extending from coastal protection, water economy, port management, agricultural production, as well as coastal tourism were subject to lively debate.
The Federal Environment Ministry and the coastal Länder of Northern Germany hosted the conference at the Patriotic Society (Patriotischen Geellschaft) in Hamburg on March 30 and 31. Among the participants were high ranking politicians, including Bremen’s Senator for the environment, Reinhard Loske, Lower Saxony’s Minister of the Environment, Hans-Heinrich Sander, Hamburg’s new environmental Senator, Jutta Blankau, Schleswig Holstein’s Minister of the Environment, Juliane Rumpf, and the Minister of Business and Employment, Jürgen Seidel. They discussed the environmental problems they expect to face in the next decades and named priorities necessary to overcoming them from a Northern German perspective.
Holger Lange, the new head of Hamburg’s environmental council closed the conference with a quote: “Our greatest problem is, we can no longer imagine what it is that we are doing.”*
The reference not only to climate change, but also to the recent events in Japan, was clear to all.
The results of the conference will be published in approximately two weeks on the following website: http://klima.hamburg.de/regionalkonferenz-2011.
*[Gunther Anders, Philosopher, in Franz Alt, Die Sonne schickt uns keine Rechnung, p. 19.]