The German Climate Change Act – a new legal framework for the Energiewende pioneer?

We are inviting: Germany-based journalists
17 January 2019, 10.30am - 1pm
Anna-Louisa-Karsch-Str. 2, 10178 Berlin
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PRESS BRIEFING on 17 January - An extreme drought in the summer 2018, a heated controversy over the pace of a coal phase-out, the Dieselgate scandal and a continuous failure to meet its self-declared emission targets – this cocktail of issues has catapulted climate policy back to the top ranks of the political agenda in Germany.


In this context, the German government coalition of CDU/CSU and SPD has announced that it will come up with a draft Climate Action Law in early 2019. While the exact nature of the proposed legislation is still unclear, its declared objective is to build a more stringent, more binding fundament for climate policy in Germany. It is also clear that similar laws elsewhere, most notably in the United Kingdom, will serve as a model and reference for lawmakers in Germany – some of whom are hoping that the law could help Germany in regaining its one-time role as an Energiewende and climate policy pioneer.

In parallel to the start of the law-making process in Germany, the CLEW media briefing will offer an inside look at the cases of the British and the Swedish Climate Change Acts and will provide an overview of existing general climate change acts across Europe.

The media briefing it will address the following questions:

  • What are the tangible effects of existing Climate Change Acts?
  • What are the elements of general climate change acts elsewhere that have proven to be most effective in reducing emissions and in providing a solid framework for low-carbon investments?
  • What are the flaws in the design of the Swedish and British laws Germany should try to learn from?


Confirmed speakers

Ariane Sains

Ariane Sains is an American journalist based in Stockholm. She currently covers energy issues in the Nordic and Baltic countries and Germany for S&P Global Platts. Sains also covers Sweden and Finland for The Economist. She is a former Businessweek correspondent and has written for many other US and British publications. When not working she enjoys traveling, preferably to places sunnier and warmer than Sweden in the winter.

Richard Black

Richard Black is a British journalist and Director of the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit (ECIU), a non-profit think-tank based in London. For more than two decades he was Environment Correspondent for the BBC World Service.


Matthias Duwe

Matthias Duwe is Head of Climate Policy at Ecologic Institute in Berlin. His main role involves the coordination of the institute’s climate change related work strands. His work focuses primarily on the European Union's (EU) and EU member states’ energy and climate policies.

You should join the briefing if you...

  • are a Germany-based journalist with a professional background in climate and energy policy
  • are a foreign correspondent based in Germany, covering German energy and climate policy issues.

What languages will be spoken?

The media briefing will be held in English.


Please send an e-mail to


Don't hesitate to get in contact with Eva Freundorfer ( with any questions you may have about the event.

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