Climate Partnership between the state capital of Potsdam and Zanzibar city

Since 2011, the state capital of Potsdam has maintained a partnership with Zanzibar City within the scope of the “50 municipal climate partnerships by 2015” project of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). An action strategy for climate protection and adjustment to climate change is being developed through an exchange of climate change experiences within the municipalities. This primarily takes the form of networking between different local partners in Potsdam and Zanzibar City.

During the partnership meeting, it rapidly became clear that climate change has arrived in the African municipalities. It is tangible in Zanzibar City in the continual flooding of Mnazi Moja sports field, for example.

Zanzibar’s most renowned district is Stone Town, the historic centre which was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2000. The ban on plastic bags in Stone Town is worthy of note. It has successfully been enforced for two years now through information campaigns and checks primarily in the area in and around the market. The key fields of action identified within the municipality of Zanzibar are waste and landfill management, coastal erosion and extensive soil degradation due to increased heavy rain, and pounding waves and a rise in the sea level in combination with flooding.

A visit to the coastal protection measures in Rostock therefore featured on the itinerary in November 2012 when a delegation of five from Zanzibar City visited Potsdam. The delegates gained insights into the methods and regulations for coatal protection in Germany during a forum held by the Mecklenburg-West Pomerania State Agency for Agriculture and Environment and the Environmental Agency of the City of Rostock.

School climate partnership between Bruno H.-Bürgel primary school and a school in Zanzibar

Bruno-H.-Bürgel primary school has maintained a partnership with a school in Zanzibar City since 2012. During a preliminary project, the schoolchildren in Potsdam sewed cloth bags for the children at the partner school in Zanzibar to help them avoid using plastic bags.

The project theme of “Children sew for children – making old into new” (“Kinder nähen für Kinder – aus Alt mach Neu”) raised awareness among the children for the subject of waste prevention in Potsdam as well as in Zanzibar. A mutual understanding for the local problems was also created.

The children have established that the subject of waste prevention is also a major problem here in Germany, and the children at the partner school were amazed at the activities in Potsdam.

Statecapital of Potsdam