German government calls for closer climate cooperation with US as elections loom
Germany is eager to work more closely with the United States on climate action once again, foreign minister Heiko Maas said in statements reported by dpa this week. Maas said that he and environment minister Svenja Schulze planned to restart the “transatlantic climate bridge,” which would apply not only at the government level but include “states, cities, members of parliament, companies and science.” The first half of next year would be the timeline for starting, the report said. Maas said that Germany was eager to restart closer cooperation with the United States regardless of who wins the elections, which are being held next week. But under president Donald Trump, the United States has backed away from many climate commitments, for instance by starting the country’s departure from the Paris Climate Agreement. The prospect of a victory for his opponent, Joe Biden, has raised hopes that some of these moves could be reversed.
Maas added there was also an opportunity for a “climate alliance” between the European Union and China, which recently pledged to reach net-zero emissions by 2060. Schulze also stated that Germany would aim to use its remaining time in the EU Council Presidency, which runs until the end of the year, to reach a deal for a higher EU climate target based around the Commission’s proposal to reduce emissions by at least 55 percent by 2030 compared with 1990 levels.