• Dec 4th 2007 at 8:10AM
  • 6
Angela Merkel, Germany's chancellor, firmly believes that the EU should be the leaders of the fight against climate change. That's why she's asked Germany's fellow members in the EU to accomplish their Kyoto Treat figures. A different policy would cause Europeans to lose their legitimacy as eco-leaders, she said.
Merkel, who has become one of the main voices on the topic of global warming, criticised some EU countries (including Germany itself) that aren't reducing their CO2 emissions. She also said that developed countries should be an example for developing countries.

Merkel is introducing her proposals at this week's United Nations Conference about Climate Change in Bali in front of Germany's Council for Energy Conservation. Europe hasn't reduced emissions by eight percent, as agreed to in the Kyoto Treaty, but only a mere two percent.

The proposals weren't mentioned in our source news, but Merkel is expected to publish the new set of measures at the beginning of 2008, three years after the first report in 2005, which will likely affect biofuel policies and car taxing systems.

[Source: dw-world via Econoticias]


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  • 6 Comments
      • 7 Years Ago
      While it was indeed disappointing to see Mrs. Merkel sacrifice some of her environmental bona fides at the altar of German auto industry interests, politics is still the art of the possible. She may be a former environment minister but she also has to deal with a coalition partner and powerful state government that care even more about jobs in that key industry. Similarly, calls from Brussels for a nation-wide speed limit are falling on deaf ears because the German electorate is still overwhelmingly opposed to this sensible idea.

      Nevertheless, for the past two decades, Germany done more than most others in Europe to structurally promote energy conservation, wind and solar power as well as recycling, biofuels (RME, BTL and biogas) and CNG. Competitive pressures with the US, China and inside the EU's single market limit how far and how fast any one country can realistically go.

      A major structural problem is that the country still depends heavily on coal - especially lignite - for its electricity. At the insistence of the SPD, the coalition agreement calls for nuclear power to be phased out by 2020, leaving Russian natural gas delivered via the new Nord Stream pipeline to take up the slack. This will increase aggregate CO2 emissions from Germany unless the flue gases are sequestered or used to support intensive algaculture (both untested and expensive options). If the 2009 elections return a right-of-center majority, expect the nuclear policy to be revisited.
      • 7 Years Ago
      I really can't see how anyone (besides people like Merkel) can claim that Germany are doing or have done better than other European countries.

      At 28% of the total figure, the vehicle CO2 emissions is one of the main sources of CO2 emissions in Europe:
      http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6334327.stm
      The poor averages of the German automotive industry are of course something which haven't come about from one day to the next, but have been like this for many years.
      When you read that the Germans come last in CO2, after the French, Italians and CO2 vehicles, we are of course talking about absolute figures. In relative terms this is actually a lot worse: Germany has the largest population and GDP in Europe and are also rather natsionalistic when it comes to buying cars (compare national market shares of national brands in Germany, Italy and France). In other words they are technologically "backwards" despite having a huge market advantage.

      In CNG there are 20 vehicles in Italy (with a fleet of over 400,000) for every CNG car in Germany (again, consider the relative population and overall fleet figures!). The bio-fuel push in Europe, on the hand, is being led by France.

      In the Energy sector the situation is very similar: it's seen be said for years that coal-energy production would be phased out, but in fact scores of new coal-powerplants have just been approved:
      http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,472786,00.html
      "Efforts by the German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, to put Europe at the forefront of cuts to greenhouse gases are being threatened by her own government's plan to build 26 coal-fired power stations."
      http://news.independent.co.uk/europe/article2383879.ece
      http://www.reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSL14553799
      Germany's coal power plans threaten EU climate goal

      At the time a lot of the most intersting new European alternative energy projects are coming from outside Germany - these include biomass, energy from the sea, thermodynamic-solar etc etc

      Enough propaganda already.....
      • 7 Years Ago
      Pretty soon this CO2 stuff will finally start to get real. Instead of talk, falling well short of goals and relying on Germany's inflated early post-reunification CO2 figures, Germany and other countries will actually have to make serious changes to reduce CO2 output.

      Carbon capture and storage will be big, and other structural changes. Then we can finally start to get somewhere. Well, if you ignore that we've just transferred all these emissions over to China through outsourcing.
      • 7 Years Ago
      #1, The German Chancellor reminds me of Hillary Clinton and most liberals and Neocons who act like Forrest Gump and float like a feather in the winds of public opinion polling and corporate/special interest lobbing bribes.
      • 6 Years Ago
      Poor Angela has got to quit listening to this IDIOT Hans.
      • 7 Years Ago
      The Germans never cease to amaze me. Only a few weeks ago Angela Merkel took up a position which was against the interests of the Environment and of Europe simply because, car-segment by car-segment, the German cars come last in Europe in terms of CO2 and other emissions, behind the French, Italians and Japanese. It is thanks to Angela Merkel that the new EU directive for car CO2 emissions has been significantly watered down.

      ... and now she feels no shame, after just a few weeks, in coming out and saying we need to do something about CO2? **** *** !!
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