“German climate goals for 2030 and 2040 require extensive coal exit”
Germany must reduce coal-fired power generation by 60 percent by 2030 and phase it out almost entirely by 2040 to achieve its emissons targets, according to a study commissioned by think-tank Agora Energiewende. National policies to achieve this aim will be unavoidable, because the European system of emissions trading (ETS) alone won’t provide enough incentives for this transition, even if the CO2 price rises to around 40 euros per tonne. “A well-planned and cost-efficient approach to reducing coal-fired power generation will increase wholesale power prices by around 0.3 cent per kWh. Therefore, it is easily manageable for industry,” states an Agora press release.
Find the press release and study in German here.
Read a CLEW factsheet on Germany's climate tagets here.
Germany's "unusually big mistakes"
Germany has become a world leader in green power, but also serves as a warning about what can go wrong, writes Joel Budd in an Economist Special Report on climate change. “Germany has made unusually big mistakes. Handing out enormous long-term subsidies to solar farms was unwise; abolishing nuclear power so quickly is crazy,” argues Budd. He says the country’s biggest error was “to ignore the fact that wind and solar power impose costs on the entire energy system, which go up more than proportionately” as more are added, writes Budd.
Read the article in English here.
Federal Statistics Office (Destatis)
“Climate protection (42.5 billion euros) main pillar of the environmental industry in 2013”
Climate protection products were one of the main drivers behind the growth of the German environmental industry in 2013, according to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis). Industry and the service sector booked sales of 66.5 billion euros with environmental goods and services, an increase of 7.6 percent compared to a year earlier. “Climate protection products, which accounted for roughly 42.5 billion euros (63.9 percent) of the total turnover of environmental products, contributed considerably to the positive development,” according to a press release. Sales of climate protection products rose by 5.4 percent. Products for climate protection comprise goods and services designed to directly reduce or avoid greenhouse gas emissions and also products for using renewable energy sources or increasing energy efficiency and energy savings, according to Destatis.
Read the press release in English here.
COP21 - The Paris Climate Summit
Almost 90 percent of Germans believe climate protection is important
More than half - 54 percent - of Germany believes the issue of climate protection is “extremely important” or “very important”, according to a survey by pollster YouGov for renewable energy provider Lichtblick and WWF. A further 35 percent said the topic was “important”. And 40 percent of participants said they “often” or “very often” thought about the global consequences of climate change.
Find the survey in German here.
“Why this climate summit could become a success”
There are two main reasons the Paris climate summit has higher chances of success than the meeting in Copenhagen, writes Michael Bauchmüller in a commentary for Süddeutsche Zeitung. “Firstly, many states do no longer perceive an exit from coal, oil and gas as a necessary good-bye to growth and prosperity… Secondly, for the first time, all states are prepared to do something against global warming.” But there is one catch, because the agreement in sight is voluntary. So if things are really going well in Paris, we might see a deal to monitor progress every few years, writes Bauchmüller.
Read the editorial in German here.
The Paris summit is meant to secure livelihoods for a humanity that is approaching eight billion members but, surprisingly, the media and general public are only interested in it in passing, writes Wolfgang Wiedlich in a commentary in General Anzeiger. He laments that nobody has told society clearly what “decarbonisation” by 2050 would mean in reality. “If Paris would be really successful, the people would be astonished. To save the climate, more is needed than energy-saving lightbulbs and abstinence from strawberries in December.”
Find the commentary in German here.
“Renewable electricity alone won’t save the climate”
Environmental groups have huge expectations for the Paris summit and hope it will be the beginning of a global Energiewende, writes Daniel Wetzel in Die Welt. But he says optimism concerning a 100 percent renewable future is based on a selective perception of the facts, because what counts for the climate is not the electricity sector but primary energy consumption. The focus on renewable power totally neglects heating, engines, agriculture and industry, argues Wetzel.
Find the article in German here.
* Like the Clean Energy Wire, Agora Energiewende is a project funded by Stiftung Mercator and the European Climate Foundation.