News Digest Item
24 Aug 2018

German government struggles to find common position on new EU climate targets for cars


The German government is still a long way from finding a common position on future EU car fleet emission limits, report Till Hoppe and Silke Kersting in the business daily Handelsblatt. German car makers’ works councils and the top brass of metalworkers’ union IG Metall will meet the Social Democrat ministers for finance (Olaf Scholz), environment (Svenja Schulze), and employment (Hubertus Heil) on 24 September to prevent what they consider too ambitious targets, according to the report. Germany’s vote could be decisive for the new EU legislation, the newspaper reports.
The conservative-led ministries of economic affairs (Peter Altmaier) and transport (Andreas Scheuer) both reject an environment ministry call for more ambitious targets. Environment ministry sources told the authors their call for more ambitious limits is not dead yet, and that union warnings of drastic job losses triggered by strict CO2 limits are greatly exaggerated. The European Commission has proposed to reduce car emissions by 30 percent by 2030, and by 15 percent by 2025, compared to 2021 levels. Germany’s environment ministry has pushed for minus 50 percent by 2030 and minus 25 percent by 2025.
In a separate commentary, Hoppe argues that carmakers need ambitious but realistic targets as a push in the transition to electric mobility for the sake of both climate and jobs, because they have been dragging their feet. “Especially China will push electric cars into the market with all its might. Our carmakers have to be prepared if they don’t want to end up like the solar industry,” writes Hoppe. 

Read the article in German here, and find the commentary in German here.

For background, read the article German environment ministry pushes for tougher EU car emission rules.

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