07 Jan 2022, 11:58
Julian Wettengel

Germany off course to 2030 climate target – think tank

Clean Energy Wire

Germany has veered off its path towards reaching its 2030 climate target, as the country’s greenhouse gas emissions increased by 33 million tonnes of CO2 equivalents (t CO2 eq) in 2021, said think tank Agora Energiewende in its latest annual review. Economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, a cold winter with increased heating needs, and a higher share of coal power raised emissions to a total of 772 million t CO2 eq, said the researchers. Both the transport and the building sector missed their 2021 targets laid out in the climate action law, according to the preliminary data. With continued economic recovery, Agora added, a further increase of total emissions in 2022 is likely. However, to reach its target of reducing emissions by 65 percent by 2030 compared to 1990 levels, Germany would have to lower emissions by 37 million tonnes CO2 eq annually from now on. Germany’s renewables share in electricity consumption dropped to 42.3 percent in 2021, showing that the record share the year before (45.6% in 2020) was due to one-off effects like favourable weather conditions and lower power consumption due to the COVID-19 pandemic, wrote Agora.

Germany’s new government coalition has upheld the 2030 climate target and the goal of climate neutrality by 2045, which was decided by the previous cabinet under then-chancellor Angela Merkel. However, the new government has said it would introduce and finalise a climate action emergency programme with all relevant legislation this year. Agora Energiewende called on the government cabinet to decide all elements of this programme by June so that they can be fully implemented by the end of 2022. “Central to this is securing sufficient land and infrastructure for the energy transition, creating a clear investment framework for industry and making the socially fair heat transition a priority,” it said.

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