Angela Merkel lectured Trump on global warming, now Germany abandoning its climate goal

By Michael Bastasch

Germany will abandon its 2020 national global warming goal, a huge embarrassment to Chancellor Angela Merkel, as part of a deal to put together a coalition government in the wake of September’s elections.

Sources tell Reuters that Merkel’s would-be coalition will drop a goal of cutting carbon dioxide emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2020. Ahead of the elections, Merkel said she’d find a way to meet the 2020 target. That was before she failed to put together a majority governing coalition.

Merkel has been highly critical of President Donald Trump’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accords, even promising to confront the U.S. president on the issue at the 2017 G20 summit in Hamburg.

“We cannot expect easy discussions on climate change at the G20 summit,” Merkel said in June. “Our differences with the U.S. are clear.”

But now, Merkel’s new government is abandoning its previous climate pledge. Instead, the coalition pushed back its 2020 goal until some time in the 2020s and keeps the goal of reducing emissions 55 percent by 2030.

Reuters reported that would-be coalition members agreed to cut severe taxes and fees on electricity bills to green energy deployment. Germany now has one of the most expensive electricity markets in the world, largely due to taxes.

Though, coalition members still agree to set up a commission to decide when to phase out Germany’s use of coal-fired electricity. Coal currently powers about 40 percent of Germany’s electric needs.

It’s not surprising Germany has decided to abandon its 2020 climate goal. Germany was not on track to meet its climate goal, despite spending nearly $800 billion in green energy subsidies in recent decades.

University of Colorado professor Roger Pielke, Jr. pointed out the impossible math behind Germany’s climate goals.

And those projections assumed no growth in energy demand. That’s not been the case, according to Reuters.

“Due to strong economic growth and higher-than-expected immigration, Germany is likely to miss its national emissions target for 2020 without any additional measures,” Reuters reported.

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Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons/Analogue Kid

8 thoughts on “Angela Merkel lectured Trump on global warming, now Germany abandoning its climate goal

  1. Germany Not Reaching CO2eq Goals: Germany’s CO2eq emissions (from all sources) are about the same as in 2009. As part of the Energiewende, Germany is aiming to have:

    – 80% of its electricity from RE by 2050
    – 60% of all primary energy from RE by 2050
    – 80% less CO2eq than in 1990, by 2050

    Germany will not meet its CO2eq reduction targets for 2020, 2030, 2040 and 2050, unless it immediately starts phasing out all coal power plants, which produced 261.5/648.3 = 40.3% of net electricity generation in 2016.

    Table 5/Year All sources CO2eq Reduction below 1990
    million Mt %
    1990 actual 1251
    2009 actual 907 28
    2016 actual 906 28
    2020 target 751 40
    2030 target 563 55
    2040 target 375 70
    2050 target 250 80

    German Not Reaching Primary Energy Goals: Regarding the consumption of thermal energy for buildings, industry and commerce, and fuels for transportation, there has been so little change that the overall primary energy consumption from RE has increased from 14.7%, 14.8% and 15.2% in the first half of 2015, 2016, and 2017, respectively.

    Germany will not meet its goal of 18% RE of primary energy in 2020. See table 6.

    Table 6/Year Electricity Heat Transport Total
    RE % % % %
    2015, Jan-Jun 30.8 13.5 5.7 14.7
    2016, Jan-Jun 32.7 13.3 5.5 14.8
    2017, Jan-Jun 35.1 13.6 5.1 15.2
    2020 goal 18.0
    2050 goal 60.0

  2. Germany’s subsidies are similar to VT’s hidden energy taxes to fund efficiency VT and state subsidies for renewable energy that can’t be viable at market rates. VT won’t likely make it’s goals either.

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