Kopfbanner Energie


umweltschulen.de is recognized as a contribution to



Target group

Direct target group: Schools and municipalities, which maintain the schools

Indirect target group: Teachers + students in schools

Learning aims

Fifty/fifty aims to teach students and teachers that the efficient use of energy, material or water is economically worthwhile, too.

Fifty/fifty aims to integrate climate protection into school life and promote environmental education.

Short description

In general: In Germany, most schools are supported by the local governments. The local governments build schools and pay for their consumption of energy, water and materials as well as waste disposal. Whether a schools wastes or conserves energy thus has no consequences of any kind for teachers and students; often they aren’t even aware of the costs. In contrast, Fifty/fifty provides financial incentives for conservative use of natural resources: schools and local governments conclude a contract, under terms of which the school will conserve energy, water or waste materials and the local government will pay the school a premium in the amount of a certain percentage of the savings (e.g. 50%).

Praxis example: The state capital of Düsseldorf offers its schools the following deal: If a school conserves energy, water or waste of its own initiative, it receives in return 50% of the costs saved for its own use. It can use this money to improve instructional quality and quality of life, e.g. by purchasing games or sports equipment, build (or rebuild) the school yard or purchase instructional materials. The city supports the participating schools through informational materials, advising and lending measuring equipment. From this background, the participating schools develop a variety of their own activities related to climate protection and environmental education.

(Please notice: In Düsseldorf, the model is called "50:50", to be written in figures - not in letters.)


Fifty/fifty has been successfully used in many German cities since the 1990’s. Most participating schools have been able to reduce their energy costs by up to 15%.

50:50 Düsseldorf is very successful. In the period from 1997 to 2008, participating schools have saved more than 1,200,000 €, reduced CO2-emissions by around 5,500 t and conserved around 100,000 cubic metres of drinking water. At the same time, environmental topics were dealt with in classes and 600,000 € in premiums were paid out to the schools. Kindergartens in Düsseldorf have also been able to participate in 50:50 for a few years now.

More information

(Sorry: only in German language):