Leipzig, Germany
City population: 502920
Duration: 2016 – ongoing
Implementation status: Ongoing
Scale: Meso-scale: Regional, metropolitan and urban level, Sub-microscale: Street scale (including buildings)
Project area: unknown
Type of area: Residental, Public Greenspace Area
Last updated: October 2021

The city of Leipzig initiated the project "Für eine Baumstarke Stadt" in 1996 to integrate community support into the greening of Leipzig through tree planting. Citizens can become tree sponsors with a donation of 250 Euros or more supporting the increase of the tree stock in parks, on the street and at squares since they are planted in addition to the tree stock determined by the city department for urban green. The sponsorship includes a sign with the indication of the tree species and a personal message. This programme contributes to a greener city landscape and strengthens the attachment of citizens to their urban environment (1, 2, 3).

Citizen Tree Sponsorship Program (2016)
Sebastian Fried, retrieved 08/18/2018


Nature-based solution

  • Grey infrastructure featuring greens
  • Alley and street greens
  • Parks and urban forests
  • Pocket parks/neighbourhood green spaces

Key challenges

  • Climate action for adaptation, resilience and mitigation (SDG 13)
  • Climate change adaptation
  • Green space, habitats and biodiversity (SDG 15)
  • Green space creation and/or management
  • Environmental quality
  • Air quality improvement
  • Noise reduction
  • Health and well-being (SDG 3)
  • Creation of opportunities for relaxation and recreation


Creation of new green areas

Project objectives

1. Strengthening citizens' attachment to urban green (2); 2. Increase the urban tree stock (2); 3. Increase quality of life and well-being for citizens of Leipzig (2); 4. Improving the city's micro-climate (2); 5. Improving appreciation of citizens for nature (2).

Implementation activities

The city department for urban green and water bodies administers the project, keeps track of available sponsorships, manages them and the plantings including maintenance provide the required online tools and customer services. A citizen/citizen group or company can choose between set locations for new trees or existing young trees. Once the sponsorship is settled, the sponsor receives a sign with a personal dedication and the indication of the tree species on the sponsored tree(s). If the sponsor wishes, he/she can also take personal care of the tree via watering or keeping the tree disc clean (1, 2, 5).

Climate-focused activities

Climate change adaptation:

  • Increase or improve urban vegetation cover to help reduce outdoor temperature
  • Create or improve outdoor spaces to help people escape from urban heat

Main beneficiaries

  • Local government/Municipality
  • Citizens or community groups


Management set-up

  • Government-led

Type of initiating organisation

  • Local government/municipality

Participatory approaches/ community involvement

  • Co-planning
  • Dissemination of information and education
  • Consultation (e.g. workshop, surveys)
  • Citizen oversight (e.g. boards, advisory)

Details on the roles of the organisations involved in the project

The Department for Urban Green and Water Bodies of Leipzig municipality initiated the project and has been maintaining it since the beginning. The department administers the project, keeps track of available sponsorships, manages them and the plantings including maintenance, provides the required online tools and customer services to receive complaints and sponsors' feedback on the condition of the trees which helps them to react quickly (1, 2).

Project implemented in response to ...

... an EU policy or strategy? Unknown
... a national policy or strategy? Yes (Promoting the greening of cities of the future to combat a variety of challenges is also the mission of the federal government, exemplified by a publication on Urban Green which serves as a guideline for German cities for further action based on best practice examples. One of them is Leipzig with its programme "Urban Forests - Urban redevelopment through afforestation" which is currently being subject to national funds: its core is the use of vacant space / deserted space as an element for green urban redevelopment (12))
... a local policy or strategy? Yes (There are two relevant plans: The "Luftreinhalteplan Leipzig" (Clean Air Plan Leipzig) and the "Lärmschutzplan Leipzig" (Noise Protection Plan Leipzig) which both mention the conservation of the current tree stock and implementation of new urban tree cover as planned measures for improving the air quality and reducing noise levels in Leipzig (10,11))


Total cost

Not applicable

Source(s) of funding

  • Public local authority budget
  • Corporate investment
  • Crowdfunding

Type of funding

  • Earmarked public budget
  • Donations

Non-financial contribution

Type of non-financial contribution
  • Provision of labour
Who provided the non-financial contribution?
  • Citizens (e.g. volunteering)
  • Private sector (businesses, financial institution)

Impacts and Monitoring

Environmental impacts

  • Environmental quality
  • Improved air quality
  • Reduced noise exposure
  • Green space and habitat
  • Promotion of naturalistic styles of landscape design for urban development
  • Increased green space area

Economic impacts

  • Unknown

Socio-cultural impacts

  • Education
  • Increased knowledge of locals about local nature
  • Increased awareness of NBS and their benefits

Type of reported impacts

Expected impacts, Achieved impacts

Presence of formal monitoring system


Presence of indicators used in reporting


Presence of monitoring/ evaluation reports

No evidence in public records

Availability of a web-based monitoring tool



Citizen Tree Sponsorship Program (2016)
Sebastian Fried, retrieved 08/18/2018