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17 Jun 2021, 11:49
Julian Wettengel

Next German government must introduce end date for fossil fuels – think tanks

Clean Energy Wire

Germany’s next government after the September election must quickly introduce measures and instruments to ensure the country reaches the increased climate targets lawmakers are set to decide next week, said the Climate Neutrality Foundation and the think tanks Agora Energiewende and Agora Verkehrswende.* “The higher ambition is feasible, but requires a completely new quality and a much faster pace in climate policy,” they write in a paper outlining 50 recommendations for the next legislative period. The organisations emphasise that new EU legislation – the European Commission will present first draft proposals with its Fit for 55 package on 14 July – cannot be seen as substitute for decisive action by the next government.

They call for an end date to fossil fuel use on 1 January 2045, with a few exceptions, for example the use of carbon capture and storage/utilisation (CCS, CCU) in industry. From that day on, gas pipelines would no longer be allowed to transport fossil gas, and heating and transport would not be allowed to use fossil oil and gas. Among the organisations’ proposals are also renewables expansion to 70 percent of power consumption by 2030: a higher national carbon price on transport and heating fuels (fixed at €60 in 2023, then market price with lower and upper limits): abolishing the renewables levy by the beginning of 2025 at the latest: a national floor price for the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS); and the goal of 14 million e-cars on German streets by 2030.

In anticipation of what will be needed to support the new EU goals, and following a landmark ruling by the Constitutional Court, the government in record time decided to increase Germany’s climate goals and pull forward the target of climate neutrality to 2045. The reform of the Climate Action Law is set to be voted on by the Bundestag on 24 June.

*Like Clean Energy Wire, Agora Energiewende and Agora Verkehrswende are projects funded by Stiftung Mercator and the European Climate Foundation.

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