News Digest Item
05 Jun 2018

Germany holds all the cards for sustainable development, must step up game – gov’t advisors

German Council for Sustainable Development / German government

Germany is prepared as much as any other country to steer its own and the global community’s development onto a more sustainable path, but it has to increase its ambitions and efforts to tap into this potential, government advisors affiliated with the German Council for Sustainable Development (RNE) say in a peer review of the country’s Sustainable Development Strategy. According to this council’s report, key elements of sustainable development are so “deeply rooted” in German society, its political system, and its institutions that there appears to be every reason to pose the question: “If Germany can’t pull out all the stops, who could?” Yet, “substantial change is needed” to bring this potential to fruition, the council says. The transformation of “consumption, production, ethics, and behaviour in line with the needs of sustainability has been too limited,” the RNE says, recommending that the power to make decisions should rest with a central coordinating executive, and that the parliamentary scrutiny of the federal government should be ramped up. The council’s head, former New Zealand state premier Helen Clark, has praised the German government for inviting foreign advisors to evaluate the country’s strategy, and encouraged other countries to follow suit.

Find the peer review in English here.

For background, read the CLEW factsheets How much does Germany’s energy transition cost? and Germany’s greenhouse gas emissions and climate targets

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