Droughts, heat, more and more severe storms – we are all feeling the effects of climate change up close. We also know what we need to do about it. Our children are even taking to the streets for the sake of it.
Right now, humanity's green footprint is so large that we would need 1.7 planet Earths to cover the volume of natural resources we consume. We drive so many cars, we are still using oil to heat our homes and we are wasting energy. All of us put together release more carbon in just seven months than forests and oceans are able to absorb in a year. The burning of fossil fuels alone is responsible for over half of these emissions.
In Germany, we have already committed ourselves to turning things around by signing an international treaty on climate protection. But what does a climate treaty at that level mean for us personally? It means we need to make real changes in our everyday lives as well. Energy-saving televisions and light bulbs are a good start because, logically, the best way to protect the climate is to use as little energy as possible. Using renewable power has an even greater effect.
But transport now accounts for the largest proportion of total fossil energy consumption in Germany. We emit more greenhouse gases than industry for our mobility alone. Because it's not only us traveling – it's our parcels, purchases and deliveries too.
Every day it becomes more difficult to achieve climate targets. That's why we all need to act with greater determination to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Right now.
We are aware that we have a special responsibility and are acting accordingly – for example, by using 100 percent green electricity in long distance transport and at our 15 largest stations. You can read here why hydropower is so important and what else we are doing as part of our mission to create CO2-free rail.