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After the German Constitutional Court ruled that the country’s climate plans weren’t sufficient, the government has announced its new plans:
Cutting carbon emissions 65% by 2030 and 88% by 2040 (based on a 1990 baseline)
Aiming for net-zero emissions by 2045, five years earlier than the initial target
The court ruling specifically called out Germany for only making plans through the end of this decade and leaving the remaining 20 years of effort to hit net zero unmapped.
“That is a fair offer for the younger generations in that we are not leaving the biggest burden for the future,” Environment Minister Svenja Schulze told Reuters. “Each decade, each generation takes responsibility.”
Why This Matters: Setting a clear path for reaching net-zero with intermediate goals along the way makes it more likely that Germany will actually hit that goal. For Sophie Backsen, one of the court case plaintiffs, it matters personally: her 300-year-old family farm on the North Sea island of Pellworm could be swallowed by rising seas. Ramping down emissions and slowing the temperature rise that’s melting glaciers and causing sea level rise is the path to keeping Pellworm above water.
As always, the work of hitting these targets still lies ahead.
A Rising Green Party: Germany’s current government is led by Angela Merkel, and the center-right Christian Democrat Union party she belongs to has been in power for 16 years. That could change this fall. The Green party currently leads polls going into elections this September. Annalena Baerbock, the party’s frontrunner for chancellor, was born the year the Greens were founded and has campaigned on a faster phase out of coal and $500 billion in just transition spending. And with the current U.S. administration, she’s eager to “get moving and point the way towards a European and transatlantic Green Deal,” as she told Deutsche Welle.
By WW0 Staff For the United States, the post-Trump, pre-COP26 road to Glasgow has been paved with ambition and humility. In a major speech, the President’s Envoy, John Kerry, previewed the results of his climate diplomacy before heading into two weeks of intense deliberations of world leaders. Speaking at the London School of Economics — […]
Next week, the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow will draw hundreds of world leaders to Glasgow to determine the path forward five years after the Paris Climate Agreement (for a primer, read this) as new science underscores the urgency. The conference aims to squeeze countries to strengthen the commitments they’ve made towards securing global net-zero […]
By Amy Lupica, ODP Daily Editor In a report released last week, the Department of Defense (DOD) confirmed that existing risks and security challenges in the US are being made worse due to “increasing temperatures; changing precipitation patterns; and more frequent, intense, and unpredictable extreme weather conditions caused by climate change. Now, the Pentagon is […]
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