Climate change more challenging than pandemic

KlimaCampus Hamburg hosts German Climate Conference (DKT)
16 March 2021
Aerial view of park

Climate change remains the most pressing, long-term challenge for humanity even against the backdrop of the pandemic, according to delegates at the 12th German Climate Conference (DKT), which began Monday (March 15, 2021) in Hamburg and ends on March 20, 2021. Organised by the German Meteorological Society (DMG) and KlimaCampus Hamburg, around 250 scientists at the virtual conference are highlighting the importance of adapting to climate change, mitigating its effects and the transformation needed in the economy.

Great need for action 

"One may feel differently at the moment, but climate change will place far greater demands on humanity than the pandemic," said Prof. Dr. Clemens Simmer, President of the German Meteorological Society. Therefore, a sufficiently informed society is important. Climate change is presently not perceived as the most urgent problem due to the pandemic, he added. That is dangerous because the longer mankind delays climate protection measures, the more it will be forced to adapt.

Prof. Dr Hermann Held, Head of the Research Unit "Sustainability and Global Change" at the University of Hamburg, called for swifter action. Scenarios of a climate policy-driven demise of prosperity would "almost certainly not come true, if we actually use the instruments already available consistently." This would require significantly greater investment in climate protection technologies and climate research than at present.

Online climate conference 

Held ever three years, this year's first online conference is focusing on global warming. Adaptation strategies in all sectors and regions are gaining importance and are now at the forefront of scientific work. Founded in 1989 as the German-German Climate Conference to promote talks between climate researchers in the east and west, the summit has  been organised by the German Meteorological Society and a local host since 2013. 


KlimaCampus Hamburg

KlimaCampus Hamburg is an association of universities, research institutions in Hamburg and federal authorities. Emphasis is on climate, climate change and climate impacts. The network enables talks, bundles skills and helps to use synergies. The aim is to communicate scientific findings to a broad public and to offer a basis for political decisions.

German Meteorological Society (DMG) 

The Deutsche Meteorologische Gesellschaft e. V. (DMG) is an information platform and interest group for all scientists working in meteorology and physical oceanography. It promotes meteorology and the dissemination of meteorological knowledge. To this end, the DMG organises conferences and training events, issues publications and takes a position on fundamental issues in meteorology.