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.”
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.