News Digest Item
28 Aug 2017

Combustion engine ban to figure in coalition talks after elections?

Funke Mediengruppe / ZDF

For the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU), a combustion engine ban is a no-go in coalition talks after the September elections, CSU head Horst Seehofer said in an interview with Funke Mediengruppe. It would “strike at the roots of our prosperity,” said Seehofer. Political goals should not be achieved with bans. "The British can do that, they've made several such mistakes before. The de-industrialisation of the market economy is a British invention," said Seehofer. A quota for e-cars was “similar nonsense,” said Seehofer.
In a separate interview with Funke Mediengruppe, Green ‘Spitzenkandidat’ Cem Özdemir said: “The Greens will not enter a coalition that doesn’t initiate the end of the fossil combustion engine era and sets the stage for emission-free transport.”
In an interview with public broadcaster ZDF, German Chancellor Angela Merkel said that the diesel engine was needed to adhere to climate targets. “We need the bridging technology [combustion engines] not for years, but decades, I’d say,” she said. She also noted that “it would be wrong to decide on a specific date now” for a combustion engine phase-out. While she took the Greens' announcement seriously, the election campaign was not about coalition-building and she didn’t “believe in saying day after day what one will introduce in the coalition negotiations.”

Read the Seehofer interview in German here, an article on Özdemir in German here and watch the ZDF interview in German here.

For background, read the CLEW factsheet The debate over an end to combustion engines in Germany, and the CLEW news digest entry Merkel signals support for eventual ban of combustion engine.

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