METRO is one of 50 companies and associations calling for faster progress in climate protection and the energy transition

9 November 2017

Calling for faster progress in climate protection and the energy transition - solar cells

An appeal involving 50 companies has demanded that climate protection measures and the energy transition, as well as the implementation of the 2050 climate protection plan, are integrated into a modernisation programme for Germany. Together, the companies involved employ over 450,000 people in Germany alone and bring in global sales of over €350 billion (more than the German budget in 2017). This makes the appeal the biggest and most comprehensive corporate declaration to champion ambitious climate protection goals ever to be published in Germany.

In the declaration, the companies push for concrete sets of measures for the implementation of the climate protection plan. This includes increasing the amounts put to tender for green power, incentives for fast-tracking building modernisations and prioritising energy grids and power storage. The companies believe it is essential that there is a reliable and socially responsible roadmap for phasing out coal-fired power in the new legislative period and are requesting an investment-relevant carbon price. The new government should also review the modernisation of taxes and duties, as well as end the subsidisation of fossil fuels by 2025. According to the companies, Germany and the EU need a consistent approach to the transport transition on rail and roads. The companies expect the new government to come up with decisive and efficient measures to achieve the 40% climate target by 2020. The climate goal for 2050 should be increased to a 95% reduction in emissions.

"Playing a pioneering role in climate protection is a huge opportunity for the innovative strength and competitiveness of our economy," the declaration states. "The next coalition should therefore increase the speed of our transformation into a greenhouse gas-neutral economy and seek out close partnerships with European and international partners in order to do so." With a smart policy framework, even the internationally competitive energy-intensive industry could push forwards with its transformation, thus maintaining its competitive edge.

High-profile firms among signatories

The declaration was signed by major companies active in Germany, large SMEs and associations from a broad range of industries. These included six DAX-30 corporations and well-known names such as Aldi Süd, Deutsche Börse, Deutsche Telekom, Hochtief, Nestlé, SAP, METRO and many more. Energy-intensive companies and coal-fired power station operators also support the call, including Siemens, EnBW, E.ON and the Varel paper and cardboard factory. Many of the signatories are companies that are not likely to directly benefit from decarbonisation or the energy transition – however, they still promise to do their bit to protect the climate. The declaration was coordinated by the business associations Stiftung 2° and B.A.U.M., and the development and environmental organisation Germanwatch.

Christoph Bals, Political Director of Germanwatch, comments:

"CO2 emissions in Germany have not decreased any further since 2009. At the Bonn climate change conference, the world will be looking with anticipation to Germany to see whether the coalition negotiations will finally agree on the necessary steps for implementing internationally agreed climate goals.This clarion call from a highly relevant section of the German economy is, particularly at this point, a powerful driving force."

Prof. Dr. Maximilian Gege, Chairman of B.A.U.M. e.V., comments:

"This declaration shows that many economic actors want to see a faster pace in terms of implementing the energy and transport transitions and the reversal of global warming than politics has permitted thus far. More and more companies are worried that Germany is falling behind when it comes to climate protection and new technologies."

Sabine Nallinger, Member of the Management Board of Stiftung 2°, comments:

"It's clear that the phase-out of fossil fuels must be on the table when it comes to the coalition negotiations – and that an unblinkered view is essential. The companies need security when it comes to planning and making investments in order to be able to make their contributions towards achieving climate goals. The 'Jamaica' coalition must make climate protection the modernisation project of our times in order to ensure the German economy remains competitive and future-proof."

For further Information see the website Germanwatch


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