01 Feb 2019, 12:37
Sören Amelang

Conservatives reject environment ministry proposal for climate action law - report

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservatives are annoyed by a first and as yet unpublished environment ministry draft of Germany's highly anticipated climate action law, which is meant to ensure the country reaches its 2030 climate targets, writes Andreas Mihm in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. The Social Democrat (SPD)-led environment ministry aims to oblige other ministries to reach the necessary emission cuts in their respective sectors at their own expense and responsibility, according to ministry comments seen by the newspaper. A vice head of the parliamentary group of Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative alliance of CDU and CSU, Georg Nüßlein, said the whole approach was mistaken, violated the government coalition treaty, and was an open invitation for lawsuits by environmental NGOs. “I’m worried the Social Democrats want to create a breaking point for the coalition because they know that we won’t accept” the proposal, Nüßlein said. 

Environment minister Svenja Schulze (SPD) has repeatedly said she wanted to ensure in the climate law that each ministry takes responsibility for meeting the targets, including covering the cost should a miss lead to penalties under EU rules.

In an editorial entitled “the new climate protection religion,” Holger Steltzner, one of the conservative daily’s principal editors, calls for a break-up of the government coalition to prevent what he calls exaggerated climate policies. Steltzner writes the government “has elevated climate policy far above other important topics like social issues or the economy. It is to be hoped the union (of conservative parties CDU and CSU) comes to its senses and breaks the government coalition in the interest of society, before the SPD-led environment ministry dictates the next Command Economy Climate Saving Law to CDU and CSU.”  


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