Think climate protection globally and act locally: This is the motto of the climate partnership between Rastatt and Saint-Louis in Senegal. In 2014, the city of Rastatt entered into the climate partnership with the West African city on the initiative of the local Naturefriends Rastatt group. Both cities agreed on measures to jointly promote climate protection and climate impact adaptation.
The climate partnership is about the mutual exchange of experience between Rastatt and the African partner municipality on the topics of climate protection and climate adaptation as well as nature and environmental education. A joint action program was also developed.
The municipal council initially rejected the implementation of the program in 2015 by a majority vote. in 2019, a cross-party motion in the Rastatt municipal council made it possible to resume the climate partnership. Since then, extensive climate protection measures have been jointly developed and successively implemented in both municipalities. They are largely financed by donations and grants.
The exchange between the two cities as well as the civil society partners, in particular NaturFreunde Rastatt e.V. and Klimabündnis Rastatt, is close. Most recently, a delegation from Saint-Louis visited Rastatt for a five-day working meeting in August 2023. The climate adaptation measures identified included the greening of city centers, the expansion of photovoltaic systems and measures to protect against flooding both on the floodplains of the Rhine and in the mangrove forests. More info
Climate trees and coconut palms
One of the goals in both municipalities is to green the city centers. 1.the city of Rastatt gave away 000 climate trees to its citizens in 2020 and 2021. These are intended to make an effective contribution toCO2 storage and also ensure a better microclimate. In Saint-Louis, thanks to numerous donations and the support of the Climate Alliance and Naturefriends Rastatt, 5,000 euros were recently transferred to the city of Saint-Louis. The money was used to plant coconut trees there to improve the climate in the city, increase humidity and stop the advance of the desert. An expansion of the street greening, including with other tree varieties, is to start in 2023 with the support of the city of Rastatt.
Photovoltaics and solar lights
In 2021, the municipal council of the city of Rastatt decided to install photovoltaic systems on suitable roofs of existing municipal buildings in the baroque city. In Saint-Louis, a photovoltaic system will also be installed on the town hall and on the roof of the registry office in Saint-Louis, and 25 solar lights will be installed on the premises of a non-profit fishery processing company for women. This will lead to greater occupational safety and enable longer working hours, allowing employees to increase their income. Further advantages: The electricity can be produced in an environmentally friendly way and light is still available in the event of power cuts, which are more common in Africa. This means that environmentally harmful generators can be dispensed with.
Reforestation of the mangrove forests
Saint-Louis is heavily affected by coastal erosion and rising sea levels due to its location directly on the Atlantic. The city wants to counteract erosion by reforesting the mangrove forests. The project receives funding from the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and has already led to the planting of 80,000 mangroves in Saint-Louis. Saint-Louis also receives support from Naturefriends Rastatt with donations and know-how.