Weeks of rain while heat waves are raging elsewhere, or t-shirt temperatures in winter while other places are dealing with arctic cold – is it just unlucky weather, or is it a consequence of climate change? What makes the difference and, most of all: what can we do about it? North Rhine-Westphalia has various destinations offering information and inspiration: museums have exhibitions and mediation offerings on the subject, a guided city tour presents places and monuments that improve town climate, and an app draws attention to specific climate changes in the forest on some family hiking routes.
Climate experience in the Teutoburg Forest
Climate-related influences have always been clearly evident in the nature park of the Teutoburg Forest/Eggegebirge, where the Atlantic climate zone borders the continental one. A new app is now guiding users through nature on family-compatible paths while playfully teaching about visible evidence of human-made climate change using augmented reality. The “Wald und Klima” (Forest and Climate) app offers two routes at this point. Additional ones are to be added in future.
A new exhibition site to make climate change and ways of adapting to it particularly tangible, the “Klimaerlebniswelt“ in Oerlinghausen, is currently being built in the region as well. Recycling and sustainability are very important for its construction, while its content is dealing with the background, consequences, and specific options for action around the complex subject of climate change.
Climate walk in Düsseldorf
What adaptations can cities use to deal with climate change? A guided tour in NRW’s state capital provides answers and presents some examples: the tour “Klima (wandeln) in Düsseldorf” (Climate Change Stroll in Düsseldorf) takes about two hours as it leads past sights, reports about town history, and shows some specific ways of reacting to climate change, e.g., by planting of contemporary trees, cooling water surfaces, or buildings such as the Kö-Bogen 2, sporting Europe’s largest planted façade.
Energeticon illuminates the conversion to renewable energies
The conversion from fossil fuels to renewable energies is at the focus of this experience museum in Alsdorf near Aachen. The multi-layered Energeticon exhibition illustrates the factors that require the change towards renewable energies, and ways to make it succeed, on the premises of the former Grube Anna II. Some options include energy generation from wind, water, solar power, and biomass. Visitors can use the 30 interactive learning stations to try, tinker, and work out. For example, they can take a turn on the wind bicycle, producing energy to move on their own, or learn about smart power grids.
Climate in special exhibitions
The Gasometer Oberhausen hosts the exhibition “Das zerbrechliche Paradies” (The Fragile Paradise) to enchant and disturb visitors until November: An enormous glow-in-the-dark globe, large nature photographs, and precious fossils such as skeletons that are up to 180 million years old cover the world’s beauty and its destruction at the same time.
The diverse causes and effects, as well as some possible solutions for the climate crisis, are covered by the LWL Museum for natural sciences in Münster in its special exhibition “Das Klima” (The Climate). Visitors will be able to immerse themselves in the world of climate research until January 2024 to learn about how climate models work and what they can tell us about the future.