In Brief: In stunt on Oberbaumbrücke, Berlin cycling advocates find temporary use for discarded Christmas trees

On Sunday, as Berlin Waste Management (BSR) prepared to collect discarded Christmas trees to shred and send off to biomass power plants, some cycling advocates found an intermediate use for the trees.

Photo by John Dickerson

 

 

The number of school dropouts is down in Berlin.

According to the Senate Department for Education, Youth, and Family, last year 8% of children and teens left school without earning a certificate. That’s the lowest level Berlin has seen in four years.

Berlin Education Senator Sandra Scheeres said the development was a good sign, but there was still more work to do.

“Every young person who drops out of school is one too many,” said Scheeres.

In 2017, the average school dropout rate across Germany was 6.9%, according to the Catholic welfare association, Caritas.

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Over the next two weeks, Berlin Waste Management (BSR) will be collecting discarded Christmas trees in Berlin. The trees will then be shredded and brought to biomass power plants.

According to BSR, the energy produced from 350,000 Christmas trees is enough to supply 500 households with a year’s worth of heat and electricity.

BSR has scheduled two pick-up dates in every district of Berlin. To find times in your neighborhood, check out BSR’s website.

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On Sunday, some Berlin cyclists came up with another way to recycle discarded Christmas trees. They lined them up on the Oberbaumbrücke to separate the bike path from the car lane.

This comes after backlash to renovations made to the bridge in October. Advocates have called for bike lanes that are protected from car traffic.

The Christmas tree stunt was applauded by Florian Schmidt, a district council official for Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg, who said a protected bike lane was on its way.

According to the Berliner Morgenpost, the action only lasted about 20 minutes before police required the makeshift bollards to be removed.

This news is brought to you in cooperation with Berliner Rundfunk.  

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