Merkel says fixing diesel crisis tantamount to "squaring the circle"
Fixing the ongoing diesel crisis ranks among the top priorities of the new German government with the goal to avoid large-scale driving bans, Chancellor Angela Merkel told parliament in her first speech of the new legislative period. “The federal government will deal first with the future of diesel,” Merkel said. Neither diesel customers nor workers should foot the bill, while air quality and climate must be protected at the same time, she said. “That’s squaring the circle,” Merkel said. “We reject comprehensive diving bans,” she said, adding that carmakers had to do their share to fix the issue. In her one-hour-long speech, Merkel also reiterated the new grand coalition's plans to pass a climate protection act which should include a pathway and an end date to a coal exit. She emphasised that "affordable energy is a precondition for a successful industrial location" and added that gearing the Energiewende towards more market-based principles will be decisive for reaching Germany's emissions reduction targets.
See the CLEW dossier The next German government and the energy transition for more information.