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„We #MoveTheDate: Local Responses for a Good Life“ Project is Launched

Scientific data shows that the planet’s resources are being vastly overused. This is our context. How can we then build a future that is both socially as well as environmentally sustainable? The CSCP has joined forces to find creative solutions that move the date of the German and the Earth Overshoot Day.

Together with the Global Footprint Network, that has successfully implemented sustainability metrics, including the ecological footprint, and engaged with more than 70 countries and 80 organisations, we want to find out how citizens can become drivers of the transition toward more sustainability. The newly-launched pilot project We #MoveTheDate aims to engage and empower cities and their citizens toward being active participants in, rather than observers of, the sustainability transformation. Through this shift in perception, the project plans to meaningfully address the emerging risks of living in a world with massive overshoot.

A key objective of the project is to generate ownership among citizens  and support the creativity and ability of urban actors to find solutions that #MoveTheDate of the Earth Overshoot Day. The Earth Overshoot Day marks the date of the year when human demand exceeds what Earth can renew in an entire year. This bottom-up engagement will help decision makers realise that advancing the transformation is not only a noble act to do, but also a necessary and even essential one. We #MoveTheDate wants to move the date by building synergies at two levels: expanding participation and positioning citizens at the heart of climate engagement.

On the one hand,  the project is based on a participation process in climate engagement activities with selected civil society organisation in two cities in North Rhine Westphalia. In a dialogue, the project engages local community groups on topics that they already advocate for. The process identifies potential catalysts and roadblocks for a sustainability transformation. Equipped with the learnings from the community groups and partners in the field, the pilot will also engage the cities’ administration by sharing citizens’ insights and finding opportunities to align them with the cities’ agenda towards a one-planet compatible city. Moreover, through an idea competition, community groups can share their most creative visions of their city with their city administration. This will facilitate a fruitful collaboration between citizens and cities that in turn helps move the #MoveTheDate.

On the other hand, the project will develop and communicate new and empowering storylines for climate action to make the Earth Overshoot Day (and German Overshoot Day) even more transformational. For this campaign, the pilot project will emphasise one theme per each participating city. Building on insights gained from cities and the citizen groups, it will position climate action as economically essential for individuals, cities, and countries. The project will also promote city-level possibilities that can help to #MoveTheDate of Earth Overshoot Day.

The project is funded by and carried out in close collaboration with the Stiftung Mercator.

For further question, please contact Alexandra Kessler.