Quantcast

Germany's Ruling Coalition Plans to Spend $44.6 Billion on Climate Protection

Politics

German Chancellor Angela Merkel's government is set to unveil a package of measures on Friday, Sept. 20, to ensure that the country cuts its greenhouse gas emissions 55% by 2030, compared with the 1990 levels.


Days before the announcement, Germany's governing coalition parties reached an agreement on a climate package, which could cost at least €40 billion ($44.6 billion) until 2023, according to reports from German newspaper Welt am Sonntag and the Reuters news agency.

"Over €40 billion in just four years is a huge sum," Welt am Sonntag quoted government officials as saying.

"We agree that something needs to be done, but it is still open which form this will take," a person briefed on the talks told Reuters. "We still have not agreed on a price for a ton of C02."

The coalition partners — including Merkel's Christian Democrats (CDU), their Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU) sister party and the center-left Social Democrats (SPD) — have long argued about how to finance Germany's march toward a green future.

The CDU/CSU have been eager to ensure that the burden of financing the measures doesn't hurt German businesses, while the SPD wants to protect small earners.

Environment and Economy

Merkel's government is under pressure to deliver a result that offers meaningful measures to protect the environment without damaging the economy.

Merkel touched on those dilemmas in her weekly podcast. "On the one hand, we want climate protection measures to be effective to meet our commitments," she said. "On the other hand, we want to be economically sensible and act in a socially acceptable way so that all people can afford climate protection."

The government's plans are expected to touch on a broad range of issues such as extending grants for electric car buyers, expanding a network of charging stations, raising road taxes for polluting vehicles, improving heating systems for buildings and raising a green surcharge for plane tickets.

Merkel has also said her government would introduce some sort of carbon emissions pricing.

Germany is set to miss its own emissions goals for 2020, and the country has seen frequent protests, especially by young people, demanding faster action to fight climate change and reduce coal use.

Reposted with permission from our media associate DW.

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Pixabay

By Alina Petre, MS, RD (CA)

Purple cabbage, also referred to as red cabbage, belongs to the Brassica genus of plants. This group includes nutrient-dense vegetables, such as broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and kale.

Read More Show Less
Pexels

By Lauren Wolahan

For the first time ever, the UN is building out a roadmap for curbing carbon pollution from agriculture. To take part in that process, a coalition of U.S. farmers traveled to the UN climate conference in Madrid, Spain this month to make the case for the role that large-scale farming operations, long criticized for their outsized emissions, can play in addressing climate change.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Pexels

By Rachael Link, MS, RD

In recent years, acai bowls have become one of the most hyped-up health foods on the market.

They're prepared from puréed acai berries — which are fruits grown in Central and South America — and served as a smoothie in a bowl or glass, topped with fruit, nuts, seeds, or granola.

Read More Show Less
Investing in grid infrastructure would enable utilities to incorporate modern technology, making the grid more resilient and flexible. STRATMAN2 / FLICKR

By Elliott Negin

The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences' recent decision to award the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry to scientists who developed rechargeable lithium-ion batteries reminded the world just how transformative they have been. Without them, we wouldn't have smartphones or electric cars. But it's their potential to store electricity generated by the sun and the wind at their peak that promises to be even more revolutionary, reducing our dependence on fossil fuels and protecting the planet from the worst consequences of climate change.

Read More Show Less
Two Javan rhinos deep in the forests of Ujung Kulon National Park, the species' last habitat on Earth. Sugeng Hendratno / WWF

By Basten Gokkon

The global population of the critically endangered Javan rhinoceros has increased to 72 after four new calves were spotted in the past several months.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
A tiger looks out from its cage at a new resort and zoo in the eastern Lao town of Tha Bak on Dec. 5, 2018. Karl Ammann believes the "zoo" is really a front for selling tigers. Terrence McCoy / The Washington Post / Getty Images

Are tigers extinct in Laos?

That's the conclusion of a detailed new study that found no evidence wild tigers still exist in the country.

Read More Show Less

A group of scientists is warning that livestock production must not expand after 2030 for the world to stave off ecological disaster.

Read More Show Less
The largest wetland in Africa is in the South Sudan. George Steinmetz / Corbis Documentary / Getty Images Plus

Methane emissions are a far more powerful greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide – about 28 times more powerful. And they have been rising steadily since 2007. Now, a new study has pinpointed the African tropics as a hot spot responsible for one-third of the global methane surge, as Newsweek reported.

Read More Show Less