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Germany's climate policy insufficient, expert group says

A council of experts has said in its policy review that Berlin's proposals were insufficient for the mitigation of climate change. It added that the over 100 measures did not amount to a cohesive overall plan.


Germany grappled with wildfires earlier this summer, with scientists warning the risk of fires is increased by climate change
Germany grappled with wildfires earlier this summer, with scientists warning the risk of fires is increased by climate change

A council of experts on Tuesday released a review of the German government's climate policy proposals.


The review found that the proposed measures were insufficient for Berlin to meet its climate protection objectives.


Why are Germany's climate efforts not enough?


Experts found that the application of the proposed climate protection program would reduce emissions by the equivalent of 200 metric tons of CO2 for the period 2021-2030.


However, this would not be enough to close the gap between current emissions and Berlin's climate goals as outlined in a climate protection law passed in 2019, experts said.


"In the case of a number of measures, we are critical of the probability of implementation," said the council's chairman, Hans-Martin Henning. He added that the council saw a disconnect between "reality and the assumptions of the federal government."


"The expected overall reduction [in emissions] is therefore probably overestimated," he said.


The council said that it believed that even if the program was to be fully implemented, there would still be a larger gap than the one claimed by Germany's government.


A council of experts has critically reviewed the German government's climate protection proposals and concluded the measures are insufficient
A council of experts has critically reviewed the German government's climate protection proposals and concluded the measures are insufficient

Experts also said they had not received sufficient data from the federal government and could not confirm the emissions reductions claimed in the policy proposals.


The council also argued that the government's proposals did not amount to a cohesive overall plan for climate protection.


It added that a cohesive, overarching framework would need to take into account conflicting political goals and potential social conflicts.


What is Germany doing to fight the climate crisis?


The federal government has proposed 130 measures as part of its climate protection program, according to the review.


Berlin published its draft proposals for climate protection in June of this year. The proposals are to be reworked following review by the council of experts.


Germany has pledged to reduce its greenhouse emissions to 65% of those registered in 1990 by the year 2030, which would amount to total emissions of 440 million tons.


In 2022, greenhouse gas emissions were at 746 million tons.


German Economy Minister Robert Habeck, of the environmentalist Green Party, had earlier claimed that the government's plans would reduce the medium-term gap between current emissions and reduction goals by 80%.


source: DW

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