News Digest Item
23 Jan 2018

E.ON CEO says postponing Germany’s 2020 climate goal is “appropriate” decision

Clean Energy Wire

The decision by parties negotiating Germany’s next government to weaken the country’s 2020 climate protection goals was an “appropriate” move that took “courage”, Johannes Teyssen, CEO of utility E.ON, said at an energy industry conference held by business newspaper Handelsblatt in Berlin. Teyssen said “a lot has happened” since Germany set its target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent by 2020, citing the country’s sustained economic growth and influx of migrants in recent years. “Precise dates are merely symbolic,” he said, adding that ambition to reach the climate protection goal was nevertheless very important. He said policymakers had to set a general course for emissions reduction and provide the tools to achieve it, “but the market and technological development will decide how quickly we move”. On Germany’s target to reduce emissions by 55 percent by 2030, Teyssen said any precise planning over such a long period was “untruthful”, but that Chancellor Angela Merkel’s conservative CDU/CSU alliance and the Social Democrats (SPD) still had to show ambition to meet the goal. “So far, solutions to this are absent in negotiations,” he said, arguing that the European emissions trading system (ETS) was “a failed instrument” that could not do to enough to reduce emissions, and that “an effective CO2 price” on a European level, backed by a national carbon tax would be “the most powerful instrument” for climate protection.

See the CLEW article German party leaders agree energy policy blueprint for coalition talks for background.

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