Environmental Responsibility Statement

Environmental Responsibility Statement


The world is facing a series of linked environmental crises. In October 2022, the UN warned that the world’s governments are not yet on track to keep global heating below 1.5 degrees, and the window for action is rapidly closing. We are already seeing the impacts of existing warming with devastating droughts, storms and floods across the world. Related crises include collapsing biodiversity, dangerous levels of air pollution, and plastic contamination in our rivers and oceans. Without urgent action from across society, these problems will rapidly escalate.

The art world has an important role to play. Arts organisations – particularly in the Global North – have a disproportionately large impact on the environment, mainly due to a great deal of international travel, arts shipping, and high use of energy and materials. We need to act urgently to reduce these impacts in line with what the science is telling us. As arts organisations, we also have an opportunity to use our public platform and cultural influence to set a positive example, encouraging and supporting others to take action and helping shift the public debate.

At Haverkampf Leistenschneider, our values and mission are to promote contemporary art without producing emissions that harm our entire eco system, and want to inspire inspire audiences, artists and colleagues to work together for this goal. To be true to these values, we need to take urgent environmental action, because art and culture across the world is directly threatened by the climate crisis, and those from marginalised communities and cultures are most at risk, while also holding many of the most effective solutions to the climate crisis.

Together with other colleagues, we furthermore set up GCC Berlin e.V. Its aim is to provide educational resources on sustainability and to promote collaborative engagement among artists, galleries, museums, and cultural institutions to reduce the environmental impact of Berlin's arts sector. This is in line with the Gallery Climate Coalition's main goal of reducing the sector's CO2e emissions by at least 50% by 2030 and promoting zero waste.

As an organisation, we know that our main direct environmental impacts include flights to art fairs, air freight of artworks for exhibitions, and energy use in our buildings. We have committed to tackling these impacts by:

  • Joining the Gallery Climate Coalition, setting up GCC Berlin e.V. to work more locally, and pledging to at least halve our carbon emissions by 2030, from a 2019 baseline.
  • Regularly calculating the carbon footprint of our operations, to track progress towards this target.
  • Setting specific targets for the major parts of our footprint, including:
    • Reducing flights to 50% of pre-COVID levels by 2025, and 25% by 2030.
    • Ensuring the majority of our international shipping is carried out by sea, rail or road rather than air by 2028.
    • Reducing our building energy use by 30% before 2030.
    • Ensuring all of our packing materials are reusable or curbside recyclable by 2026, as a step towards zero-waste operations by 2030.
    • Using only low or zero emissions vehicles for local deliveries by 2025.
  • The actions we are taking to meet these targets include:
    • Planning our exhibitions and events with care to minimise the need for air freight.
    • Reviewing our staff travel policies and practices, and planning our attendance at international events to reduce the need for air travel.
    • Working with other GCC members on projects to help develop more sustainable packaging, transport and energy saving solutions for the whole sector, such as we do in Berlin with GCC Berlin e.V.
    • Speaking to our suppliers and service providers about their carbon footprint, and looking for opportunities to encourage them to take action, or to switch to alternative suppliers who will.
    • The gallery is powered by KUNSTSTROM from E-Werk Luckenwalde, a cultural place and installation where sustainable electricity is generated and fed into the national grid.


We aim to take action in line with the principles of climate justice, recognising the connections between the climate crisis and other global injustices. We want our environmental actions to support - rather than  undermine or ignore - the needs of people on the frontlines of marginalisation and injustice.

We have set these targets and are taking actions in the knowledge that we aren’t yet doing everything right. We still have a great deal to do and much to learn. We welcome feedback from our artists, audiences and stakeholders on this environmental statement, our targets, and on our plans for action.