Protecting the climate is a job for all of us

The average temperature in Germany has risen by around 1.7 °C since the start of the modern
industrial era (ca. 1880).* So we have already passed the 1.5 °C limit set at the UN climate
conference in Paris in 2015. In Lübeck too, the results of the “anthropogenic”, or human‐made
climate crisis are visible in heavy downpours, droughts and periods of high temperatures.

The Possehl Foundation therefore explicitly supports the resolutions on sustainability adopted by the federal German government (Germany’s Sustainable Development Strategy) and the United Nations (UN Sustainable Development Goals).

Now these agreements to sustain human life on planet Earth have to be put into practice. It is a task of historic dimensions and it is incumbent on all of us – it will only be possible with the combined efforts of civil society, government institutions and individuals. Climate action is one of the areas needed most urgently to support the UN and the German government ’s sustainability goals, specifically the race for climate‐neutrality or “net zero” emissions, which means cuting emissions of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide, methane, etc. as far as possible in Germany.

The Possehl Foundation has adopted an internal policy to drive the environmental transformation and put a number of processes in place to implement it. The intention is to reduce our own climate footprint to a minimum by the end of 2024, and to give applicants for our funding the best possible assistance to become climate‐neutral themselves.

On the basis of this policy , we and those applying to us for funding will set off together on a path to avert the dangerous and imminent effects of climate change for all of us.

Sustainability in funding applications**

The Foundation can only support activities to meet the climate action targets within the framework of its charitable purposes. Activities focussed purely on sustainability and climate action (like the renaturalisation of rivers or sustainable forestry management) do not fit into any of the purposes defined in the articles of the Possehl Foundation and so unfortunately cannot be funded. However, the Foundation can sponsor environmental sustainability measures in the context of projects that do conform to its articles of association (such as projects involving young people, social work, education, science, sport, culture, preservation of listed buildings, etc.).

It is not (yet) obligatory to men on aspects of environmental sustainability in funding applications
to the Possehl Foundation. We would be pleased if they are taken into account and described from now on, however. Some basic questions for you to ask about your project may include:

  • What are the main environmental challenges and climate impacts of your project?
  • What possibilities do you see for keeping the climate impact of your project to a minimum?
  • What (additional) costs are incurred by including environmental measures in the operation of
    the project?

Climate action

Big organisations are faced with a different set of challenges than individuals and groups carrying out smaller, less complicated projects, which may only be intended to run for a limited period.

One thing is certain, though: every (!) step we take brings us closer to our des nation.

To reduce CO²e emissions, often known as our “carbon footprint”, requires action to be taken in the following areas:

  • Energy: e.g. using 100% electricity from renewables, LED lightning, insulation, solar panels
  • Resources: e.g. environmental and fair‐trade standards for sourcing, use of biodegradable
    materials, water‐saving devices
  • Waste: e.g. waste avoidance, waste sorting, recycling, sharing material, circular economy
  • Mobility: e.g. using public transport, bike parking spaces, electric vehicles, charging points,
    activities to raise awareness and educate employees/visitors

Measures to protect the environment and maintain biodiversity should also be considered when
planning a project:

  • e.g. avoiding animal products, not using palm oil, partnerships with nature conservancy
    organisa ons, because the carbon footprint of agricultural products is enormous too.

There are currently many specific funding programmes available for sustainability projects: from the EU and at local, regional or federal government level in Germany. If you are thinking about applying to the Possehl Foundation for funding, you should also look into the availability of government grants and subsidies, especially for larger projects.


If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact:
Sylvia Teske‐Schlaak,, +49 (0)451 148219

* Source: Federal Government

** The Possehl Foundation can only sponsor activities that are directly linked to Lübeck. If you would like to apply for funding, all the necessary information can be found on our German website at "Ihr Antrag".


Possehl Foundation Lübeck

Beckergrube 38 – 52
D-23552 Lübeck
E-Mail: possehl-stiftung(at)
Tel.: +49 (0)451 148-200

Find Out More

Our publications

More about the Foundation

Here you can find our annual reports, Emil Possehl’s will, our art catalogues and publications to mark the 100th jubilee of the foundation.


Emil's bequest

Our articles of association

The Foundation only supports non-profit and charitable causes and “promotes all that is good and beautiful in Lübeck”.