05 Oct 2023, 13:22
Julian Wettengel

German climate policy package “wholly inadequate” – NGOs

Clean Energy Wire

The German government has agreed upon the final version of its comprehensive climate action programme 2023, which NGOs criticised as insufficient to reach greenhouse gas reduction targets. The programme of policies and measures is “wholly inadequate,” said Environmental Action Germany (DUH) and criticised the planned reform of the country’s climate legislation, with which the government aims to shift away from the current focus on annual emissions reduction targets for each economic sector. Umbrella organisation Climate Alliance Germany said the government had to “urgently adjust” its policymaking to address the projected gap to reaching emissions reduction targets in the years until 2030.

When presenting the draft of the package in June, the government itself said that the 2023 programme still means that Germany will emit a total of 200 million tonnes of CO2 more than planned by the end of the decade. It has since asked stakeholders for input, but did not make significant changes for the final programme to close the gap. This would have taken too long, said a spokesperson of the economy ministry. “We wanted to bring this to a conclusion in the cabinet first, so that we can also insist on its implementation,” said the spokesperson, adding that ministries would tackle the emissions gap in the future. The country’s Council of Experts on Climate Change said that the draft programme overestimated its total potential to lower emissions.

Energy efficiency industry association DENEFF also criticised the programme. “The self-proclaimed progress coalition is currently causing mainly gridlock,” said managing director Christian Noll. The suspension of energy efficiency standards for new buildings and the “chaos” surrounding government support funds in the building sector meant there was no real impetus from the government, especially in the building sector, and the emissions gap could even grow, he said.

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