27 Nov 2017, 00:00
Kerstine Appunn Benjamin Wehrmann

Germany lacks e-car raw materials / G20 resource dialogue started

Welt am Sonntag

German industry association BDI has warned that an e-car boom could put pressure on the availability of raw materials for German industry, Welt am Sonntag reports. “Without a sufficient supply of cobalt, graphite, manganese and lithium there won’t be future technologies ‘made in Germany’,” Matthias Wachter from BDI told the paper. With the rise of electric mobility, different raw materials were needed and at the moment demand was growing faster than capacities for extraction.

Read the article in German here.

Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung

German carmaker BMW will invest about 200 million euros over the next four years in a “battery cell centre of excellence” aimed at “grasping the technological aspects of battery cell production,” Henning Peitsmeier writes in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. “Battery cell research is an integral part of our development,” BMW research head Klaus Fröhlich told the newspaper. According to BMW, understanding how a battery cell is produced is valuable information, regardless of whether BMW decides to build batteries itself or not. However, the carmaker says it could still enter into mass production by 2021.

Read the article in German here.

See the CLEW factsheet on Early e-car starter BMW for background.

Representatives of the G20 nations are meeting in Berlin today to talk about resource efficiency. The resource dialogue came out of the G20 summit in Hamburg last summer and aims to find ways of using resources such as water and land more sustainably. Germany’s environment minister Barbara Hendricks said in a press release: “Those who want to achieve the climate targets of Paris have to invest in resource efficiency. By using raw materials more efficiently, we save on energy and transportation and safeguard important ecosystems.”
Germany will hand over the presidency of the G20 to Argentina on 1 December 2017.

Read the press release in German here.


The German Chancellor Angela Merkel’ conservative Christian Democratic Union (CDU) has greenlighted talks aimed at reviving the so-called grand coalition with rival Social Democratic Party (SPD), news agency Reuters reports. A renewal of the coalition between the country’s two largest parties is seen as the only politically viable option to prevent a minority government or new elections after the failure of talks between the conservatives, the pro-business FDP and the environmentalist Green Party. The SPD initially rejected a continuation of the grand coalition but now finds itself “under intense pressure to preserve stability,” the article says.

Read the article in English here.

See CLEW’s Coalition Watch and the article Government gridlock – can Germany still act on climate? for more information.

pv magazine

Installing solar and pv power plants on cropland only has a minor effect on the crop yield, Daniel Seeger writes in pv magazine. A trial with so-called agro-pv installations showed that the solar power installations reduced the yield by between 5 and 20 percent, depending on the crop plants. Losses in yield had to be counted against an increase in electricity production, the article says. Agro-pv installations could increase land-use efficiency by 60 percent, researchers at the Fraunhofer ISE said.

Read the article in German here.

Süddeutsche Zeitung

Instead of phasing out the 20 dirtiest coal power plants, the German government should buy and retire EU emissions allowances, writes Friedrich Breyer, professor for economy and social policy at the University of Konstanz in an op-ed in the Süddeutsche Zeitung. This would reduce emissions in the EU directly and also let prices for emissions allowances rise, Breyer argues.

See the CLEW article Germany’s energy use and emissions likely to rise yet again in 2017 and the CLEW factsheet Understanding the ETS for background.

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