Environmental Lecture Series SS24


One Home, One Chance: Time to Accomplish Sustainability Goals Before the Deadline

Have you ever wondered if our home, our planet, still has a chance? Or if we have already crossed the deadline? And what consequences will follow if we surpass it? Will the deadline become our DEADline?

One thing is clear – the world must become more sustainable. And it must happen now! In 2015, the United Nations urgently called on all nations, regardless of their level of economic development, to take action to reach the UN Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. Yet, as we look around the world today, six years before the deadline, we wonder what has become of those calls. Where is the peace? Where is the equality? And where, please, is the climate action? Has anyone looked at the clock and noticed the ticking deadline?

Indeed, yes. Despite all the negative developments, we must not forget that there has been progress too. For instance, the number of people living in extreme poverty has decreased by more than half, dropping from 1.9 billion in 1990 to 836 million in 2015. Additionally, effective HIV treatment has cut global AIDS-related deaths by 52% since 2010. These and other success stories are being achieved by humans out there who work tirelessly every day for a sustainable future. These humans, experts in their sustainability goals, will be our speakers and tutors for the lecture series this summer semester. So, let’s get inspired, let’s learn, let’s gain hope, and let’s unite for sustainability as the seventeenth goal, ‘Partnership for the Goals,’ asks of us. Because we have only one home. One chance.

For TUM students interested in earning 1 or 3 ECTS credits

For everybody else

Lectures and events

  • 6:00 pm – 6:30 pm: Introduction Session
    A comprehensive overview of the lectures and course structure.
  • 6:30 pm – 7:00 pm: SDG Quiz
    Test your knowledge and learn more about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with our engaging SDG Quiz.
  • 7:00 pm – 7:30 pm: Q&A session

    Shared Session with Hochschule München University of Applied Sciences

Lecture Hall R 1.046 | Lothstraße 64 or online via Zoom Meeting-ID 947 3715 4657 with password 631726

Concrete is generally regarded as a climate-damaging building material. The presentation wants to show that the building industry doesn’t work without concrete. Concrete can also be sustainable and resource-saving if the right ingredients were used.

Prof. Dr.-Ing. Andrea Kustermann is a professor of Building Chemistry, Building Materials, and Building in Existing Structures at the Faculty of Civil Engineering at the Munich University of Applied Sciences since October 2013. At the University of the Federal Armed Forces in Munich, she served as an Academic Director (5/2013 – 9/2013), Scientific Laboratory Manager (2005-2013), and Research Assistant (1998-2005) at the Institute of Construction Materials. Following her apprenticeship as a carpenter (1990-1992), Andrea Kustermann studied Civil Engineering at the Technical University of Munich (1992-1997). Since 1999, she has run her own engineering office for building damage assessments and material analysis and has been a partner in the construction company for renovation and remodeling work, Kustermann & Herz GbR, since 2003.

Join our workshop to learn more about the project and the situation in Munich. We will do some creative work together and explore the university’s neighbourhood.


Einmal ohne, bitte is a project founded in Munich by rehab republic e.V. with the main goal of enabling package-free shopping by using one’s own cup, container, or bag.

The number of participants is limited. Registration link coming soon!

Where: TBA (on TUM Main Campus)

    Shared Session with Hochschule München University of Applied Sciences

Lecture Hall 0980 (AUDIMAX, Siemens-Hörsaal, Auditorium Maximum), Ground floor | Arcisstraße 21 or online via our Zoom link

Did you know that everyone has a strong impact on “Life below water” and our marine ecosystems, even though we here in Bavaria live so far away from the ocean? Do you want to learn how and why we need to act now for our oceans and marine life? Then join this lecture by Frank Schweikert, Founder and Director of the German Ocean Foundation. He will explain how the daily work of the institutions he is involved in contribute to a meaningful status improvement of the world’s largest ecosystem – the ocean. Although we humans depend on a healthy ocean to survive on planet Earth and the ocean is connected to all our rivers, we nearly know nothing about it. So, let’s dive into this amazing and still unknown ecosystem, allow ourselves to be inspired to change how we think, act, and feel about the ocean, and learn how we, even as students, can sustainably impact the future of “Life below water”.

Frank Schweikert is the founder and director of the German Ocean Foundation, President of the German Marine Litter Association, and Vice President of the German Society for Marine Research. He is the founder of Hamburg Climate Week (since 2009) and an associated member of the German branch CLUB OF ROME and ALDEBARAN Marine Research and Broadcast. He was a member of the European Union Assembly Mission Board “Climate Change Adaptation, including Societal Transformation” (2019-2022) and an honorary member of the Rotary Club Passport ECO Planet. He studied Biology with a diploma at the Universities of Stuttgart and Munich.

Countries are not on track to meet the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development that comprises 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets to be achieved by 2030. Although SDGs aim to shift the world onto a sustainable and resilient path, countries are not yet able to make transformative changes for long-term sustainability that require building social prosperity and foundations within planetary boundaries. Failing to achieve SDGs will negatively affect billions of people and worsen environmental conditions and socio-economic problems. Therefore, BeyondSDG aims to understand the necessary conditions for long-term sustainability, including achieving SDGs, based on the following specific objectives:

  1. identify critical targets for prioritizing SDGs;
  2. investigate the effects of (under)achieving SDGs on long-term sustainability beyond 2030; and
  3. identify sustainability targets for the post-2030 development agenda. For this, BeyondSDG applies a threefold scientific approach that combines statistical analysis of empirical and modelled data, qualitative analysis of literature, and knowledge co-creation with stakeholders, including sectoral experts and policymakers, based on systems thinking.

This combination of three approaches is complementary and essential to deal with the complex topic of long-term sustainability.

Prajal Pradhan, an Assistant Professor at the University of Groningen, studied agricultural engineering and environmental management. He has received the ERC Starting Grant 2022. Prajal was a lead author of the IPCC Special Report on Climate Change and Land. He has experience designing relevant research on sustainable development, climate change, and food systems. His current research focuses on understanding the necessary conditions for long-term sustainability, including achieving SDGs, urban transformations, and climate resilience. He is also a Visiting Scientist at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany.

More details on the entire program to follow!

  Workshop with Plant a Seed: 10 Ways to Add Biodiversity to the Garden
When: 3:45 pm – 4:45 pm | Where: TBA

Shared Session with the TUM Green Office Weihenstephan and SRM Talks

We joined the Green Office in their inspiring program Biodiversity Week Weihenstephan for a day of immersion in SDG 15 Life on Land. Check out the full program for the week, which runs from May 13-17.

Knosporus Bioblitz – Biodiversity in the Campus Garden
When: 2:00 pm – 3:30 pm | Meeting point: Campus garden “Knosporus”, Lange Point 14, 85354 Freising
Together with the CampusAckerdemie students, we explore the flora and fauna in the campus garden and immerse ourselves in the hidden wonderland of nature in the Knosporus microcosm. Whether you are young or old, whether you are a species expert or just like to spend time outside, come along and join our colourful bioblitz!

  Reintroduction of Species and Species Conservation
When: 5:00 pm | Where: TBA (on campus Weihenstephan)

  • Hands-on or Hands-off – What is the best Approach in Species Conservation? – Dr. Norbert Schäffer (LBV Chairman)
    Dr. Norbert Schäffer, chairman of LBV (Society for the Protection of Birds and Nature in Bavaria), will delve into the multifaceted approaches utilized by organizations like LBV in species conservation. In his presentation, he will draw upon various examples of species protection initiatives in Bavaria to illustrate the range of methods, highlighting their advantages and disadvantages.
  • Species Conservation in Transition: Climate Change is Becoming a Challenge for the European Bald Ibis – Johannes Fritz (Project Manager LIFE Project)
    Johannes Fritz will discuss the ongoing project of reintroducing northern bald ibises, supported by the European LIFE program, which has successfully reintroduced around 250 birds into the wild. However, delays in autumn migration due to longer warm periods from global warming threaten their survival, prompting efforts to establish a second migration route to Andalusia, Spain. This highlights the significant impact of climate change on wildlife and the challenges for conservation projects.
  • Discussion and Networking Dinner
    Following the talks, there will be a moderated discussion where attendees can engage with the presenters and explore topics further. This will be followed by a vegan networking dinner, allowing attendees to connect, exchange ideas, and build relationships in a relaxed setting.

What does it take to use our economy as a lever to shape the sustainable transformation? And why are we still working with paradigms that are outdated? The talk will give an overview of future needs and obstacles on the way. How can we shape our economy to operate within planetary boundaries? And how do we need to shift our way of thinking about things?

Antonia is advocating for a regenerative and just new economic thinking. She is currently studying the M.A. Responsibility in Science, Engineering and Technology at TU Munich, working at the sustainability consultancy Agentur2020. Furthermore, she is a fellow and coach at the think-tank CRITICAL FRIENDS, where they actively want to create a beautiful economy.

A healthy ocean is essential to global well-being, biodiversity, and includes critical ecosystems underpinning all life on earth. Despite its values, the ocean is under immense pressure from human activities, threatening its ability to support human well-being, with disproportionate impacts on vulnerable communities. The majority of these pressures come from economic activities related to the ocean (“ocean economy”) such as fishing, aquaculture, coastal development, and shipping. Globally the ocean economy is worth over $4t AUD/yr and is expanding at twice the rate of the mainstream economy. At the same time, the gap in funding to protect and manage ocean health is at least $266b AUD/year and growing rapidly. Not only does this put the future of the ocean at risk, it also risks the entire global economy: over two-thirds of all publicly listed companies are at risk due to ocean decline.

Investing a sustainable ocean economy (SOE) however can reduce economic losses by $8t AUD by 2037, yield six times more food and create 12 million new jobs by 2030. In a SOE, ocean health and ocean wealth are held in balance, and sufficient and durable finance for the management of ocean health is provided from the SOE. Despite clear evidence that achieving SOE will be better economically, ecologically and socially, market barriers hinder the transition. Key market barriers include inadequate policies, funding, capacities, and pipelines of investable SOE deals.

This talk will dive into the global efforts to align capital flows with SDG 14.

Dr. Dennis Fritsch is focusing on ocean finance and the blue economy at Minderoo Foundation. Previously, he led the United Nations’ Sustainable Blue Economy Finance Initiative, bringing together banks, insurers, and investors to align their activities with a sustainable ocean economy and SDG 14 – Life Below Water. Before, he established the research department at Responsible Investor, focusing on investor perspectives on Blue Economy and biodiversity. He further supported the European Commission’s BlueInvest Fund and BLUE Marine Foundation, alongside being selected as a Protect.Blue Wavemaker 2023 and for the pool of experts to contribute to the UN’s 3rd World Ocean Assessment (WOA III).

What does activism for sustainable development look like? How do activists navigate ‘sustainable development’ discourses and identities? And what role do online learning networks play in reshaping their practices?
Drawing from activist ethnographic research conducted in Latin America, this talk sheds light on how activists strategically navigate discourses and identities related to sustainable development. However, amidst this strategic flexibility, there exists a looming risk: the overshadowing or sidelining of grassroots community engagement. Ecological endeavours are inherently intertwined with political implications, and socio-political arguments are deeply embedded within ecological concerns (Harvey, 2018). The complexities of ecological and socio-political dimensions demand that they be viewed as interconnected and influencing one another in intricate ways.
The talk invites us to maintain a critical lens on the discourses surrounding ‘sustainable development’. By interrogating and challenging dominant discourses, activists can continue to strive for sustainable development that genuinely empowers communities and catalyzes meaningful change, not just in Latin America but beyond.
Abigail is an adult educator dedicated to socioecological justice. Currently pursuing her PhD at the University of East Anglia as a UNESCO Chair in Adult Literacy and Learning for Social Transformation Scholar, she focuses on the learning processes for social change, activism for sustainable development, and online learning networks in Latin America. Abigail collaborates with Flor del Desierto, a women’s learning community for local action in Zapotitlan Salinas, Puebla, Mexico, and actively participates in various online networks addressing climate change and sustainable development.


On-site: TUM Main Campus
Room: N 1080 – Lecture Hall August-Föppl
Floor: 0 (ZG)
Building: 0101 N1 (U-Trakt) – North area
Location: Theresienstraße 90, 80333 Munich

Online: Zoom (link to be announced soon)

Contact us!


History of the Environmental Lecture Series

The lecture series on the environment is an interdisciplinary, public lecture series organised by the Environmental Department of the Student Union of the TU Munich. It is organised by TU Munich students on a voluntary basis.

Speakers have been giving lectures on the topic of sustainability since 1985. This includes, for example, technical environmental protection, health, consumer and climate protection. In this way, it offers both students and teachers at the TU Munich, as well as the non-university public, the opportunity to learn about and discuss these topics and research results at a scientific level.

The speakers from research, associations, authorities and companies will be happy to answer questions from the audience after the lecture; the slides of the lectures, and in some cases the video recordings themselves, will be made available – if available – on our website. In the 40 years of its existence, more than 480 lectures have been organised so far.

In the meantime, the lecture series on the environment has become a regular part of the TU’s lecture programme and is supported, among others, by the management of the TU Munich, the Munich Center for Technology in Society and the KHG of the TU Munich. The lecture series on the environment is a partner of the BNB, the “Alliance for Sustainability in Bavaria”. In addition, some lectures are held in cooperation with the Environmental Academy and the Munich Forum for Sustainability.


Check out our trailer! 😉

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Our previous lecture series

Watch our previous recorded lectures here!

RiVo SS23 Poster