Robert Habeck: Climate protection measures in the transport sector are inadequate

After traffic light agreement
Habeck considers climate protection measures in the transport sector to be insufficient

Federal Minister of Economics Robert Habeck (Bündnis 90/Die Grünen)

© Bernd von Jutrczenka / DPA

After a long struggle, the traffic light coalition decided on a series of measures to make progress in climate protection, for example. Nevertheless, the Green Economics Minister complains that too little is happening in the transport sector.

Economics Minister Robert Habeck has expressed skepticism that the traffic light coalition will be able to make decisive progress towards more climate protection in transport. The Green politician said “time online” (Thursday): “One result of the coalition committee is that this government will no longer be possible in the transport sector.”

With a view to the long deliberations of the coalition leaders, he said that many discussions had revolved around climate protection and transport. “And I’m not giving away a secret when I say that the measures agreed there will under no circumstances mean that Germany can meet its climate targets in the transport sector. The measures agreed in total are not enough to fill the gap.” Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) will also see it that way. Habeck said: “What we are doing in the transport sector to protect the climate is not nearly enough to do what is necessary.”

Volker Wissing: “It was not the Ministry of Transport that missed the climate targets”

Wissing defended himself against criticism in the SWR “Interview of the Week”: “It was not the Ministry of Transport that failed to meet the climate targets, but society as a whole. It is all of us who are mobile who cause these CO2 emissions. And we cannot do them arbitrarily reduce in the short term because we have to be mobile.”

The FDP politician added that there were also many voices against him from the coalition. “It would be better if we found a common path in dialogue instead of confronting oneself with strange allegations. I, as Minister of Transport, tend to suffer from the criticism here.”

In 2022, CO2 emissions had increased compared to the previous year, and the annual emissions permitted under the Federal Climate Protection Act were exceeded. Experts see a large gap in achieving climate goals in the medium and long term.

Robert Habeck sees the CO2 surcharge and truck toll on the plus side

Habeck said to the coalition committee that the Greens had struggled to make progress on climate protection and had also achieved something. “Every point is hard-fought. But it’s worth it.” He mentioned, for example, the CO2 surcharge on the truck toll, which is partly used to finance the expansion of rail transport. “Road finances rail – that’s new and breaks with previous thinking.”

The heads of the SPD, Greens and FDP had also agreed in the transport sector that bridges should be renovated more quickly. However, the Greens also agreed that certain motorway projects should also be built more quickly – the party had long rejected this. Environmental groups had rated the compromise on freeways as a setback for climate protection. There is also criticism of a planned reform of the climate protection law, which, from the point of view of environmental associations, means a softening of compliance with climate targets in the transport sector.


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