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environmental education work

The OWL conducts environmental education work with a focus on countries of the Global South. Through educational measures in schools as well as by providing educational materials online, the OWL educates people in various analogue and digital formats about climate change and the relevance of combating it.

The interdisciplinary approach of our work is particularly important. By drawing connections between capitalist market economy, colonialism and global warming, children and young people are able to understand issues around climate justice in their historical, geopolitical and global dimensions.


The OWL aims to convey environmental protection as a global challenge that can only be overcome with the help of a conscious, politically engaged, young and globally networked generation.


Project call "Tetikasa Madagasikara"

The “Tetikasa Madagasikara” project started with a call for projects in Madagascar for political education projects. Creative and journalistic projects with educational added value on climate-relevant topics in Madagascar were supported.

With the help of the project, Malagasy perspectives on climate challenges are intended to achieve global reach.



Call for Climate Action Projects
Participants of our project for environmental education

The results of the project - the artistic positions on the topic of climate change can be found here:

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Madagascar - Country of the first OWL cooperation 

Madagascar is an island located in the Indian Ocean and the fourth largest island in the world.

Since its geographical isolation from the Indian subcontinent over 88 million years ago, Madagascar has evolved into an island of incredible biodiversity. 90% of the species found on Madagascar are endemic and are found nowhere else on earth.

Madagascar's primary forest is not only home to a uniquely diverse flora and fauna, but also the root of a natural and healthy ecosystem - the source of fresh air and a balanced climate.

As in many other parts of the world, Madagascar is experiencing a massive decrease of its forest. Over 90% of the primary forest has already been destroyed through:


Tavy or slash-and-burn agriculture 

Tavy is the traditional practice in malagasy agriculture. Tavy is mainly used to convert natural vegetation into rice fields. Usually, one or two hectares of forest are cleared, burnt and then planted with rice. After one or two years, the field is left fallow for 4-6 years before the process is repeated. After 2-3 such cycles, the nutrients in the soil are exhausted and the land is likely to be colonised by scrub or alien grasses. On slopes, the new vegetation is often insufficient to anchor the soil, leading to increased erosion and landslides. 


For many Malagasy, tavy is the most practical way to provide for their families. Due in part to the severe poverty that particularly affects the island's rural population, many families focus on daily food security, which makes it difficult to develop more ecologically sustainable methods of farming. Since many people, in view of their economic plight, are more concerned about today than thinking about the long-term consequences of their actions, the environmentally harmful traditional farming method of tavy continues to prevail. Moreover, rice cultivation also has spiritual and cultural meanings that go beyond the economic and nutritional value of rice as a crop. 


Logging for timber 

Logging is a particular problem in the rainforests of eastern Madagascar, especially on the Masoala peninsula. The high value of Malagasy hardwoods (especially ebony and rosewood, which are in high demand on international markets) makes illegal logging a significant problem in some protected areas. 


Logging generally does not lead directly to deforestation, but deteriorates the condition of the forests and increases the likelihood that they will be cleared for subsistence agriculture or other purposes in the future.


Firewood and charcoal production 

Madagascar's endemic spiny forests are being cleared for charcoal production at an alarming rate. To make a living selling charcoal, often in the form of small charcoal pyramids along the roads in south-western Madagascar, many of the producers turn to the nearest plant source, in this case often alluaudia trees in the area. 

To produce charcoal, the wood is charred, i.e. heated to high temperatures in a pile or kiln.

In Madagascar in particular, where more than three quarters of the total population live in extreme poverty and have no access to electricity, firewood is the only source available to ensure daily survival, especially in rural areas where those most affected by poverty live.


Malagasy households consume about 100 kg of charcoal per month and use this energy for cooking, heating and as a source of light.


Both practices, slash-and-burn and charcoal production, continuously consume large areas of primary forests in Madagascar. The high demand and the resulting great pressure on the Malagasy forest exceeds its capacity to regenerate from deforestation.


Deforestation in Madagascar and around the world is causing serious problems! Forest destruction is followed by erosion and landslides, water loss and soil quality degradation, the decline of biodiversity and the extinction of endemic species, as well as the increase of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere and the associated acceleration of global warming.

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Global Forest Watch(GFW) is an online platform providing data and tools to monitor forests. Using cutting-edge technology, GFW enables anyone to access almost real-time information about where and how the world's forests are changing.

The Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) provides information about Madagascar!

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Current information on food security, climate change and projects in Madagascar from the Welthungerhilfe.

The private, independent nature conservation organization WWF is active in almost 100 countries. The most important instruments of the WWF nature conservation work are the designation of protected areas and the sustainable, i.e. nature-friendly use of natural assets. In addition, the WWF is committed to reducing environmental pollution and wasteful, environmentally harmful consumption.

Here you can find information from the Society for International Cooperation (GIZ) on current and completed projects and programs in Madagascar.

Global Learning -  Links and Materials on Global Learning

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EPIZ - Global Learning in Berlin

What is Global Learning? Information and projects on global learning in Berlin.

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EWIK - One World Internet Conference

Global learning portal with current developments in global learning topics, ongoing projects, upcoming events, training courses, etc.


Also available on the website: educational materials according to the guidelines of global learning.

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Brot für die Welt e.V. provides a document with guidelines for Global Learning for download.

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The program Bildung trifft Entwicklung, short BtE, qualifies and places speakers for educational events in global learning. The topics covered are conveyed by speakers with authentic experiences from the Global South.


Here you can find materials and project descriptions for global learning with a focus on climate justice.

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