Transport emissions reduction looms as German society’s “next major conflict” – opinion
Bringing down emission levels in the transport sector is set to become the German “society’s next major conflict,” Thorsten Knuf writes in an opinion piece in the Frankfurter Rundschau. A recent study conducted by the think tank Agora Verkehrswende* demonstrated that tighter EU emissions limits for new cars are a necessity, but represent only a partial step that urgently needs to be taken in order to meet the Paris Climate Agreement’s requirements – and German Chancellor Angela Merkel has made it clear that she already rejects even this minimum measure as it appears to be too ambitious, he says. The transport ministry (BMVI) is currently working on setting up a transport commission, patterned on Germany’s coal exit commission, which is supposed to find solutions for making transport in Germany more efficient. The conclusions of this new transport commission will heavily affect carmakers, the country’s most important industry branch. “Transport minister [Andreas] Scheuer knows how explosive this topic can become in car country Germany,” Knuf says.
*Like Agora Energiewende and the Clean Energy Wire, Agora Verkehrswende is funded by the Stiftung Mercator and the European Climate Foundation.