This paper discusses the representation of resource exploitation and consumption in German geography textbooks. The aim of the paper is to contribute to a critical and reflective understanding of the representation of resource-related issues in textbooks by analyzing two scientific debates (resource curse and actor analysis). The paper shows that all studied geography textbooks contribute to a certain degree to awareness raising in Education for Sustainable Development (ESD), but references to the everyday life of students are rare. There are only few action-orientated tasks in the frame of resource exploitation and consumption in the studied textbooks. As real-world examples help develop students’ critical thinking skills and shape their ideas of sustainable development, these aspects reflect a pedagogical shortcoming.