Traffic light resolutions: Habeck speaks of false reports – CDU “partially stunned”

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Dhe traffic light parties agreed on Tuesday evening after almost 30 hours of marathon deliberations on a common course in climate and infrastructure policy. The decisions provide for faster planning processes for large infrastructure projects, including 144 highway projects, as well as for rail, for power grids and renewable energy – and called for several associations and criticism from the opposition parties. Environmental organizations accused the coalition of softening climate protection rules.

These are the reactions:

Federal Minister of Economics Robert Habeck (Greens) resisted the interpretation of the coalition resolutions as a green defeat. The claim that he was defeated in the coalition committee when he revised his heating plans is simply wrong and “misses the point”.

“I don’t know where the message came from. It’s wrong,” Habeck told WELT. “It is correct that we have agreed to confirm what we had previously decided: that from next year we will go for 65 percent renewable energy for new heating systems and for replacement. That we – as the law already provides – make it open to technology. That was in there before.”

According to Habeck, a heat pump is just one of many options. Hydrogen heaters are also conceivable, but in practice they would hardly be widespread anyway because they are far too expensive: “All options are possible, i.e. district heating systems, heating with biogenic fuels, maybe also hydrogen, which is not available at the moment. But who bets on it – four times as expensive I’m guessing – please! Being open to technology also means that you can set up more expensive heating systems – and of course heat pumps too. So: Basically, this is more of a confirmation of what we have planned.”

CSU regional group chief Alexander Dobrindt considers the result to be disappointing “That’s not a bang, it’s certainly not a double bang. I don’t think that’s even a wummschen,” says the CSU politician to the broadcasters RTL / ntv. SPD, Greens and FDP had obviously agreed on small common denominators, much had remained open. “I’m missing a lot there. That means that some things were obviously not agreed at all,” Dobrindt complained. He cited the household and the Bundeswehr as examples.

Dobrindt sees the Greens in particular as weakened in their position: “One impression that one can get is that the Greens leave this event quite plucked.” Federal Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) did not make any budget available. “The Climate Protection Act has been badly polished,” said Dobrindt. In addition, the obligation to replace the heaters, which were “probably a project close to Mr. Habeck’s heart”, is now off the table.

“And then some didn’t want to know anything more and the chancellor took cover”

“What’s great is the area with the biotope network,” says Green politician Anton Hofreiter in the WELT interview. Otherwise he is dissatisfied with many of the results of the coalition committee. He also criticizes the Chancellor’s attitude: he must also implement what has been decided.

Minister of Labour Hubertus Heil (SPD) defended the results. It is about how Germany, as an economy with a strong industry, becomes climate-neutral by 2045, he said. “So that’s a good package, so that Germany remains economically strong and achieves the energy transition.” Among other things, Heil listed the expansion of infrastructure and renewable energies.

The traffic light course now also provides for the promotion of around 140 motorway projects. However, they are about accelerated planning, explained Heil. It is true that there are gaps and “we also renovate dilapidated bridges, for example”. “But above all, we managed to invest massively more in the rail infrastructure in Germany,” said Heil. The package of resolutions will help the country move forward and speed up implementation. “Because we all know that we’ve been too sluggish in Germany in recent years.”

Green: “You can not be satisfied with”

The Green Chair Ricarda Lang also criticized parts of the results. “I want to say quite honestly: is what it says about climate protection enough? No,” said Lang in the ARD “Morgenmagazin”. In particular, she mentioned the issue of transport, where there is a larger gap in reducing CO₂ emissions.

“You can’t be satisfied with what’s on the table yet.” Nevertheless, the 16-page paper contains progress. “I think it was right and proper that the government came to a result here after really tough negotiations and is also able to act,” said Lang. Your party wants to fight for more climate protection within the coalition. “Often we do that, quite frankly, on our own,” she added.

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The faster planning procedures for highways are “a painful compromise,” said Lang. At the same time, however, the principle of “road financed road” had been broken. The Green Party leader said that 80 percent of the planned CO₂ surcharge for the truck toll from 2024 should flow into the rail expansion.

FDP parliamentary group leader Christian Dürr praised the resolutions on climate protection and infrastructure expansion. For Germany, they are the largest modernization package in recent decades, said Dürr NDR Info. An agreement was reached because the coalition parties took a pragmatic look at what the country needed now.

“People have gotten the feeling in recent years that Germany has become much too slow,” said the FDP politician. “That makes entrepreneurs mad, that also makes people mad, and that’s where we want to get faster now, and that’s why we have this extensive package.” Differences of opinion were “perfectly legitimate”.

SPD General Secretary Kevin Kuehnert expects an end to the quarrels after lengthy negotiations. He assumes “that the discussion will not start again in two or three weeks,” said Kühnert on the Bayern 2 broadcaster she had been described.

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The SPD general secretary was satisfied with the resolutions and at the same time made it clear: “We haven’t found the world formula yet.” But there is now “more clarity and more truth about how to proceed”. These are results that will bring Germany “years of acceleration”.

At the same time, however, he also made it clear that the coalition committee only provides “a political framework and a corset”. “Such a coalition committee paper is not a piece of legislation,” said Kühnert. Details and implementation regulations still have to be worked out and changed, such as the Building Energy Act on the subject of gas and oil heating.

CDU: “Stunned in parts”

The deputy federal chairman of the CDU Andrew Young criticized the resolutions sharply: “I’m not just disappointed, I’m in parts stunned“, he said in the ARD “Morgenmagazin”. “Nothing was decided on the budget, nothing was decided on basic child security,” he explained. Also in the question of heating, which became a contentious issue between the coalition partners, there are only generalities, no answers. “All questions are open. The dispute will continue,” said Jung.

The opposition politician criticized the traffic light course for climate protection. “We have to make progress on climate protection, but we have to combine it with the social component, with the economy, with sustainability across the board. This is our way. That’s what we expect from the government,” he said.

Environmentalists were from the results also not at all enthusiastic. In particular, the planned softening of the Federal Climate Protection Act is a disaster, criticized the German environmental aid (MORON). “This anti-climate protection coalition is seriously laying hands on the Federal Climate Protection Act. In doing so, she sins against all future generations,” explained the DUH federal director Juergen Resch.

“In the transport sector, the horror news is almost uncountable, including a whopping 144 accelerated motorway construction projects and the planned de facto equal treatment of combustion engine cars with electric vehicles,” criticized Resch. He called on the members of the Bundestag to “roundly reject the planned deterioration of the already unambitious law from the Merkel era”.

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Continuation of the meeting of the coalition committee

Greenpeace criticized similar points: “By giving up the obligation to implement each individual sector goal, Chancellor Scholz (…) is acknowledging that his party’s greatest climate policy success, the Climate Protection Act, will be gutted,” explained Martin Kaiser, CEO of Greenpeace Germany. “This relieves Transport Minister Wissing, of all people, of responsibility when it comes to climate protection. If 144 additional climate-damaging motorway projects are to be paved through the country at an accelerated rate, the climate will be driven further against the wall.” The “traffic light marathon” did “far too little” to climate protection, even throwing it back “in important places”.

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Klingbeil, Lang and Lindner provide information about the results

The traffic light coalition wants to give up the previously strict emission requirements for individual economic sectors in the climate protection law. This was announced by FDP leader Christian Lindner after the end of the deliberations in the coalition committee. Watch the full results press conference here.



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