19.2 C
New York
Saturday, June 3, 2023

Buy now


Germany is letting domestic squabbles pollute Europe’s green ambitions

for internal combustion engine For an engine to keep running, hundreds of components need to work in perfect harmony: a fire in one part can destroy the entire engine.The same goes for creating a new process European Union Law, a human creation whose inner workings rival the complexity of a car engine.No one knows this better than Germany, which saw the birth of the car and the car European Union. but.A clumsy attempt to sabotage new European legislation at the last minute – eliminating sales of new internal combustion engine cars by 2035, as it happens – has left compatriots European Union Membership boils. It is not the first time German Chancellor Olaf Scholz has been accused of prioritizing domestic political convenience over European interests.

Hear this story.
Enjoy more audio and podcasts iOS or android.

Your browser does not support

This month will mark a public relations triumph European Unionadjustment machine. Few laws agreed in Brussels – by 27 member states, European Commission and 705 Ministry of Environmental Protections – of great interest to anyone other than lobbyists and a few Twitter fanatics. The outlawing of the internal combustion engine is one such example. It notes that Europe is taking concrete steps to achieve “net-zero” carbon emissions by 2050, including reducing 1990 emissions by 55% by the end of the decade.Forcing change in the mighty auto industry is a hallmark of the law: it empowers European Union Its credibility is high when it demands that the rest of the world also act on climate change.

The self-congratulations have been postponed — or possibly canceled, no one knows. Even insiders in Brussels believe the internal combustion rules were passed months ago. All that remains is the procedural step of ministerial signatures, another opportunity for politicians to applaud a job well done. What was supposed to be just a formality has turned into a huge wrench at work. Germany is now refusing to ratify it, despite German officials being present at every stage of the law’s passage through the complex Brussels process, and signing it time and time again. This behavior is almost unprecedented.Revisiting agreements once consensus is reached is a recipe for breaking consensus European Union Machines, the diplomatic equivalent of pouring a dollop of diesel into a gasoline car.

To understand German Wrench, look at its domestic politics. Mr Schulz chairs a coalition of Social Democrats, Greens and Liberal Democrats (Liberal Democrats), the youngest of the three, served as Minister of Transportation. Rather oddly, its liberal notion includes a coddling of incumbent automakers, some of whom aren’t keen on having to scrap their polluting tech.this Liberal Democrats Defeated in a string of regional elections, it needs a reason to shore up its base.it wants European Union Exemption for cars that receive “e-fuel”, which is suitable for gasoline vehicles but made with renewable energy (currently in small quantities).this Liberal Democrats Said it wanted to keep technology options open. But the e-fuel loophole could leave Porsche, BMW and others continue to make internal combustion engines — and car owners will likely continue to inject carbon-emitting fuels into internal combustion engines.

At this point, European etiquette suggests that Mr. Schultz should put Liberal Democrats Back to square one: Germany strikes a deal with it European Union Partner, that’s how it should be. Instead, he campaigned for the Liberals, knowing it would cause an uproar among his European allies (a quarrel that few seem to have noticed in Germany). Seeing Berlin’s hesitation, others also gained confidence. Italy, home to some dynamic carmakers, is now saying it too wants to review the law: it was agreed under centrist Mario Draghi but is now in power under the strong right Georgia Meloni .Poland, also run by populists, but less fond of European Union Green rules, like the rest of Central Europe, have been added. This group may not be satisfied with the modest commitment to e-fuels that satisfies Germany.

The main concern in Brussels is that Mr Schulz’s mismanagement of the coalition has led to a crucial derailment European Union Green measures.The committee is likely to come up with some face-saving assurances to help him reassure Liberal Democrats And still allow the law to pass. Its chairman, Ursula von der Leyen, is herself a former German minister and attended a federal cabinet meeting last weekend. But anything beyond superficial changes would require a massive reopening of the law and the completion of all these rounds of negotiation. Who knows what that might turn out to be.


This is not the first time Mr Schulz has put Germany and coalition management above European interests. A 200 billion euro ($211 billion) energy insurance plan in October to insulate German companies and households from the war in Ukraine has received a poor response from other countries European Union The country cannot match such generosity. Central Europeans are angry at Berlin’s delays in arming Ukraine.Mr Schulz’s tendency to focus on domestic affairs has resulted in a Franco-German alliance that was once a reliable engine European Unionsputtering.

Ukraine war sparks what Mr Schultz says Zeitenwende In Germany, the zeitgeist had changed.this European UnionWhen it comes to defense, the largest nation will no longer be a wallflower, and maybe even further. Far from criticizing Berlin, its neighbors welcomed the new assertive commitment. Now less.The result has not been a vibrant new Germany European Union, but a spat that lets the native squabble move to the continental sphere. Many other European leaders have tricky alliances to contend with.everything is important European Union To legislate for domestic political interests.

complain about german and European Union Nothing new. For most of her 16 years in power, Angela Merkel has been criticized for the way she delays making decisions until the last minute. If anything, those days are now fondly remembered: because when Mrs Merkel agreed to something, no matter how belatedly, at least she stuck with it.

Read more from our European politics columnist Charlemagne:
After seven years of Brexit negotiations, Europe is the clear winner (March 2)
Why Vladimir Putin will never stand trial in The Hague (February 23)
What’s Behind France’s Deadly Obsession With Russia (February 16)

For more coverage on climate change, subscribe to our bi-weekly newsletter, Climate Matters, or visit our Climate Change Hub.

Related Articles


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Stay Connected

- Advertisement -spot_img

Latest Articles