30 Oct 2020, 10:42
Alex Dziadosz

German states lagging behind many sustainable mobility targets, study says

Clean Energy Wire

Germany’s federal states are lagging behind on many sustainable transport targets, particularly on climate protection goals, according to a study commissioned by German transport and environmental groups. The study was carried out by the Quotas research group on behalf of rail advocacy group Allianz pro Schiene, Friends of the Earth Germany (BUND) and the German Road Safety Council (DVR). It was based on five categories: climate protection, air quality, traffic safety, noise reduction and land consumption. Baden-Württemberg, home of carmakers Daimler and Porsche, ranked first overall in the study, with relatively strong scores in terms of traffic safety, noise and land consumption, scoring 65 out of a possible 100 points. Thuringia and Rhineland-Palatinate followed. “However, the front runners also have major deficits when it comes to central environmental protection and safety issues,” the groups said in a statement. Bavaria came in last place with just 39 points, behind Schleswig-Holstein and Hamburg—largely due to the fact that Bavaria is not transparent about transport-related pollution and had low air quality and land consumption scores, the statement said.

Germany’s transport sector has become a focus of the country's climate protection efforts. Emissions have remained stubbornly high since 1990 as efficiency gains have been eaten up by rising car numbers, and a trend to heavier vehicles, such as SUVs. This week, the auto industry committed to climate-neutral mobility by 2050 for the first time.

In terms of climate protection, Hamburg achieved the highest ranking in the study as the only state that has been able to reduce CO2 emissions from 1990 levels sufficiently to stay on course for the federal government’s 2030 emissions reduction targets. All others are failing to meet these targets, and Bavaria does not even set climate protection targets, the study said. Commenting on the report, Thomas Krautscheid, head of the Transport and Environment Department at Quotas, said that ambitious political goals would be needed to get federal states back on track to meet climate goals in the transport sector. "Objectively speaking, all federal states still have a long way to go before we can speak of a sustainable transport policy,” he said.

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