12 Aug 2022, 11:56
Julian Wettengel

German associations call for rapid energy efficiency boost before beginning of winter

Clean Energy Wire

An alliance of associations have called on Germany’s government to boost energy efficiency ahead of the winter, as rising prices and a looming shortage of gas affect households and businesses. The German Industry Initiative for Energy Efficiency (DENEFF), environmental NGO umbrella organisation DNR, the Federation of German Consumer Organisations (VZBV) and the energy consultant association GIH all called for a “historic energy saving package.” They argued that it is important to increase energy efficiency in the long term by investing in more efficient buildings, companies and public infrastructure. “Energy efficiency is more important than ever, but the federal government is unfortunately largely inactive,” Christian Noll of the DENEFF told journalists in Berlin. “Not much has happened since the outbreak of the war against Ukraine and now there are only 50 days left until the start of the heating season.”

DNR president Kai Niebert said that: “Putin's attack on Ukraine and now also on the European energy supply show that the new era for energy efficiency is long overdue.” The longer action is delayed, the higher the costs will be, he explained. “The additional relief package announced by chancellor Scholz is important in the short term, but the best relief package he can bring in the medium term would be the efficiency booster for Germany,” added Niebert.

Germany is not an efficiency frontrunner in Europe, said DENEFF’s Noll. “There are measures such as standards for retrofitting the worst buildings in terms of energy that the Netherlands and France have already implemented, where the German ministries have said they want to wait for Brussels,” he said. That is not the right answer at the moment, he added. Overall, he stated that Germany has a lot of homework to do: “It is by no means the case that Germany can be said to be the world champion in energy efficiency.”

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