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Özdemir wants to stop farmers‘ protests with a compromise: Agriculture Minister Cem Özdemir (Alliance 90/The Greens) plans to propose a compromise in the conflict regarding the reduction of subsidies in agriculture. To compensate for the gradual reduction in subsidies for agricultural diesel that go to farmers, Özdemir intends to introduce a subsidy for farmers financed by an „animal welfare levy“ on meat products. This subsidy is intended to help farmers to organise their production in a more environmentally friendly and animal-friendly way. Another major demonstration by farmers is planned for today in Berlin. The animal welfare cent, which is intended to increase meat prices only minimally, is based on the proposal of the Borchert Commission of 2020, which recommended an „animal welfare levy“. As this is legally complex and an increase in VAT did not receive majority support, Özdemir sees the animal welfare cent as the preferred solution for improvements in animal welfare. „It makes meat more expensive, in cent amounts. You don’t even notice that with schnitzel.“ ,

Climate Council identifies key gaps in EU climate policy post-2030: The European Science Advisory Board on Climate Change (ESABCC) emphasises the urgency of immediate action on renewable energy and carbon capture to achieve the post-2030 climate targets. This is made clear in a report that analyses the main shortcomings in EU climate policy for the period after 2030. Europe is currently about to adopt the „Fit for 55“ legislative package, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 55 per cent compared to 1990 levels by 2030. In a statement, the ESABCC makes it clear that additional measures are essential in order to achieve the EU target of climate neutrality by 2050 at the latest. The report entitled „Towards EU climate neutrality: progress, policy gaps and opportunities“ was published by the Climate Council on Thursday, 18 January.

Greenland loses 30 million tonnes of ice per hour

A new study recently published in the journal „Nature“ has revealed that Greenland has lost considerably more ice over the past 40 years than previously assumed. Since 1985, ice loss has been around 20 per cent higher than previously estimated. This increased ice loss could have far-reaching consequences for sea levels and possibly also for oceanic currents such as the Gulf Stream.

Decision on climate money probably in this legislative period after all: With the climate money, the coalition government actually wanted to create social equalisation for the population. However, the announcement that it would not be introduced until the next legislative period caused disgruntlement – even within the coalition itself. Now there are indications that it may be introduced earlier after all.  In the meantime, the Greens are insisting on the introduction of a climate money in this legislative period as agreed in the coalition agreement. Federal Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) recently announced that he would not be looking at implementing the relief payment until ,

Against greenwashing: The European Parliament recently passed a directive aimed at combating so-called greenwashing in advertising. This legislation prohibits misleading advertising claims about products that are labelled as environmentally friendly, sustainable, biodegradable, climate neutral or eco, unless these claims can be backed up by appropriate evidence. In particular, the use of terms such as „climate neutral“ or „climate positive“ will be banned if they are based on CO2 trading schemes. The new regulations are intended to make the labelling of products clearer and more trustworthy by only allowing sustainability labels that are based on recognised certification systems. ,

LNG from the USA – is Washington turning on the gas tap: Instead of Russian gas, Europe is now increasingly focussing on liquefied natural gas from the USA. However, a rethink is being considered in Washington. The US government is said to be considering reducing exports of liquefied natural gas to Europe.  Specifically, there are plans to export less liquefied gas in future for climate protection reasons in order to reduce dependence on fossil fuels.

EU Commission wants to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 90 per cent by 2040: The EU is to become climate-neutral by 2050, and CO₂ emissions are to be reduced by more than half by 2030. The Commission now wants to present an ambitious interim target.



Towards a sustainable life

Plastic is a growing problem worldwide, particularly due to the increase in packaging and pollution from waste exports. While individual efforts such as zero waste help to reduce plastic consumption in one’s own household, these measures alone are not sufficient to solve the overall problem of plastic waste. A comprehensive societal discussion about our economic system is needed, as lower economic growth could potentially reduce plastic consumption. Heike Knüpfer offers practical tips on how to reduce the use of disposable plastic at home and provides information on the underlying causes of the plastic problem and the challenges associated with economic growth.

ING: The Dutch environmental organisation Milieudefensie will take the major bank ING to court for violating global climate protection
Government cuts plan: Farmers‘ president announces new protests.
Greentech China: Germany is at the forefront of green technologies of the future. But China is doing much more – and is attacking key German industries.
Investors against Shell: A group of 27 investors who own around five per cent of Shell’s shares have submitted an independent resolution calling on the energy company to set stricter climate targets.
„Waiting time of up to 18 months“: Trade feels thwarted in the expansion of PV systems.
Critical agricultural report: calls for more courage and support from politicians in the transformation of agriculture.
Experts: Germany will not be able to phase out coal by 2030.

The seventeen goals magazine tells inspiring stories about how people move the world and shows how everyone can make a contribution to achieving the sustainability goals.


Climate money and other traffic light construction sites: „That was a problematic sentence from the finance minister“

Brigitte Knopf, Vice Chair of the Expert Council for Climate Issues, explains in the podcast where the traffic light system should find solutions in climate policy despite adverse circumstances. And what she thinks of Lindner’s statements on climate money.  Less money, angry farmers and a lack of unity: the traffic light party has started the new year with quite a bit of baggage when it comes to climate policy. But none of this helps, because a number of loose ends are urgently waiting to be tied up, for example the traffic light system has still not passed a new climate law. Brigitte Knopf has been closely following the climate-related activities of the German government as part of her job. In the podcast, the Vice Chair of the Expert Council for Climate Issues explains where the coalition should still find solutions in climate policy this year – and what solutions there may be.


Keeping promises

by Teresa Martus

It was actually a project that all three coalition partners had once written on their election campaign banners in one form or another. People pay money for behaviour that causes CO2, this money is paid back across the board to everyone, and the bottom line is that those who have found alternatives to diesel or heat more efficiently than before come out with a plus. Voilà: „climate money.“

The approach is almost captivatingly simple – and appeals to each of the coalition partners for at least one reason: the Greens are happy about the incentive to make everyday life more climate-friendly, the SPD about the inherent social impact of the idea and the FDP about the fact that people are given the freedom to decide where and how they would like to reduce CO2 emissions (or whether they want to do so at all). It is a concept that is reminiscent of the early days of the coalition, when there was cautious optimism that the combination of SPD, Greens and FDP could be more than the sum of its parts.  To put it mildly, this hope has not materialised. Instead, political differences were ploughed up with money from the very beginning. And since the Federal Constitutional Court put an abrupt end to this process before Christmas, the differences are greater and money is scarcer than ever. And the climate money is now threatening to fall victim to this situation. The truth is: the money that the coalition once wanted to pay back has long since been earmarked elsewhere. The revenue from the CO2 price is channelled into the Climate and Transformation Fund (KTF), and the climate money would also be paid from this fund. However, this is the very fund whose increase was declared null and void by the constitutional judges. And none of the ministries that managed to save their projects in the KTF in the new budget are now overly interested in cancelling them in favour of the climate money after all.


Transport industry open to higher Deutschlandticket price: Will the Deutschlandticket become more expensive this year? The transport ministers are discussing further financing today, Monday. The transport industry has already positioned itself.

Study: Traffic will decrease by 2051 – Wissing’s forecast wrong: In March, the Federal Minister of Transport wanted to know how road traffic will develop by 2051. The result: a significant increase, especially in freight transport. A Prognos study now casts doubt on this – and comes to the opposite conclusion: traffic will actually decrease.

Mobility in cities: The car is still the most widely used means of transport. This can be easily recognised in everyday traffic patterns, even without statistical surveys. However, this was not always the case: at the beginning of the 1970s, the majority of people still walked or used public transport. Cars and bicycles hardly played a role back then.

EU initiative to expand connected e-mobility in cities: In the metaCCAZE innovation project launched at the beginning of 2024, a consortium of players from twelve European countries is dedicated to the expansion of networked e-mobility in cities. The new mobility approaches will initially be demonstrated in Amsterdam, Munich, Limassol and Tampere.

Warning of a bloodbath: Stellantis boss Carlos Tavares warns of a bloodbath“ if car manufacturers get involved in a price war for electric cars without taking costs into account.


Resistance to hydrogen for Germany: Canada’s eastern province of Nova Scotia wants nothing less than to become the world market leader in the new sector. But it urgently needs clean energy at home. And the hoped-for contracts are a long time coming.

How hydrogen imports can reach industry: If German industry wants to obtain hydrogen from abroad, onward transport from harbours and other hubs must be ensured. A study by the Fraunhofer Institute IEG shows that the most cost-effective way to do this is via the planned hydrogen core network. Smaller consumers would have to rely on trains and ships.

By 2030, 12 per cent of hydrogen will be „green“: According to the study „The Roaring ’30s – A clean hydrogen acceleration story“ by consulting firm Roland Berger, global hydrogen production is expected to increase to 110 million tonnes (Mt) per year by 2030 and to grow to around 240 Mt by 2040. To meet this demand, an installed electrolysis capacity of 1 terawatt (TW) would be required. However, the expansion of electrolysis capacity is currently inadequate. Yvonne Ruf, Partner at Roland Berger, notes: „In the 2030s, we will need to add as much capacity annually as in the entire previous decade.“ The manufacturing industry is expected to consume almost half (48%) of the hydrogen produced, while the mobility and energy sectors will account for a significant proportion of demand at 30% and 15% respectively.


Budget 2024: -Losses in the development budget: Section 23 of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development in the Budget Act 2024 (20/7800, 20/7802) includes expenditure of 11.22 billion euros compared to 11.52 billion euros in the government draft and 12.16 billion euros in 2023, according to the budget committee’s adjustment meeting. Revenue in the budget of Minister Svenja Schulze (SPD) totals 765.1 million euros as planned in the government draft (target 2023: 749.11 million euros). Commitment appropriations amount to 7.17 billion euros (government draft: 7.07 billion euros; target 2023: 10.93 billion euros).

Information about the Nutri-Score: Since the decision to introduce the Nutri-Score as voluntary extended nutritional labelling for Germany in 2020, the German government has awarded contracts worth 1.57 million euros for information about the Nutri-Score. The Federal Government writes this in its answer (20/9992) to a minor interpellation (20/9898).

Franziska Brantner emphasises the importance of companies working for the common good: The Parliamentary State Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Economics and Climate Protection (BMWK), Franziska Brantner (Alliance 90/The Greens), emphasised the importance of the programme during the debate on the Bundestag’s briefing (20/8372) on the National Strategy for Social Innovation and Public Welfare-Oriented Enterprises in the Economic Affairs Committee. The 70 measures that the BMWK intends to implement together with the Federal Ministry of Finance form a „bouquet of measures to strengthen this growing sector of our economy“, said Brantner at the meeting on Wednesday. This endeavour can also be seen in neighbouring European countries such as France and Spain.

Expert: Sea ice in the Arctic „less and thinner“: The Committee on Education, Research and Technology Assessment discussed the impact of climate change on the Arctic and the Arctic expedition of the research vessel „Polarstern“ in an expert discussion on Wednesday morning. As part of the MOSAiC expedition, the research vessel drifted through the Arctic for a year from October 2019. Led by the Alfred Wegener Institute, an international team researched how the Arctic is changing and what impact climate change is having on the region. The Director of the Helmholtz Centre for Polar and Marine Research at the Alfred Wegener Institute, Antje Boetius, who took part in the expedition herself, presented research findings to the committee. The marine researcher explained that the sea ice in the Arctic „has not only become less, but also thinner“. It is also a global problem that the oceans are not only being polluted by overfishing and illegal fishing, but also by „excessive nutrient discharges“ from agriculture, which is still not sustainable. Boetius pleaded for the oceans to be seen not just as „distant fringes of the earth“, but as what makes life on earth possible in the first place. more at

DWD to develop and operate natural hazard portal: The German government wants to amend the DWD Act so that the German Weather Service (DWD) can develop and operate a natural hazard portal in which the responsible authorities can enter their early warnings, situation and precautionary information on natural hazards. The „Draft of a Second Act to Amend the DWD Act“ (20/10032) presented for this purpose will be on the Bundestag agenda for the first time on Thursday. The draft is intended to create the legal basis and the requirements to be met by the federal government as the operator of the natural hazard portal and publisher of the information it contains.



Weather and climate cannot be separated at all. Because when it comes to the weather, we are dealing with the consequences of climate change. The rise in temperatures is having a serious effect globally. In the past year in particular, we have noticed a massive change in the weather systems, in the currents. And that led to the extreme weather events in Greece last summer, for example. First there were weeks of heat and fires and then torrential rainfall. The same low pressure system that passed over Greece at the time built up again over the Mediterranean and also led to severe storms in Libya, in which thousands of people lost their lives. Most extreme weather events today are due to climate change. That’s why it would be absurd to say that meteorologists can only talk about the weather for the next three days.

Özden Terli, meteorologist and ZDF weather presenter, said that everyone is allowed to be happy about good weather. The sentence that one should not be happy about it was wrongly attributed to him, but in reality his approach is different. He does not want to talk about good weather, especially in times of weeks of drought, which people, animals and farmers suffer from when it is too hot and too dry. Instead, he believes it is more important to warn of the dangers, to urge people to protect themselves and, for example, not to exercise in the late afternoon, as this is when it is hottest. He criticises those who initiate a discussion about speech bans in view of these circumstances and emphasises that these people do not understand what is at stake, want to distract or take their audience for fools. As a journalist, it is his job to provide context, and that is what he does.


Guinea: On Guinea’s Tristao Islands, biodiversity is protected by environmental protection measures implemented by the local population.

Kenya: A study emphasises the importance of elderly care in Kenyan slums to improve the living conditions of older people. Growing old is never easy. Especially not in Kenya, where there are hardly any structures in place to care for the elderly. But even here there are more and more old people. Agnes Kariuki is campaigning for better living conditions – and for better laws.

Island state of Cape Verde is free of malaria: Good news for Cape Verde: The island nation in the Atlantic Ocean has been classified as malaria-free by the World Health Organisation (WHO). According to the government of the island state, which is located off the coast of Africa, no local malaria infections have been recorded for at least three years. To be recognised as malaria-free, Cape Verde had to prove to the WHO that there had been no local cases of infection for at least three years and that an effective surveillance system was in place to prevent a possible return of the disease. Cape Verde has a population of around 600,000 people.

African Climate Summit: Be part of the solution. Climate protection is to become the driving force behind Africa’s green transformation. Who can be a partner for this?

Namibia: The difficult road to reconciliation. In 1904, the Herero and Nama rose up against the German occupiers. The uprising was brutally suppressed and ended in genocide. To this day, there has been no reconciliation between Namibia and Germany.

Director withdraws film from Berlinale series over Gaza war: A filmmaker has withdrawn his production from a Berlinale sidebar because of Germany’s allegedly too pro-Israel stance on the Gaza war. „I have made the decision to withdraw my film „Atmospheric Arrivals“ from the Berlinale Forum Expanded and will not be participating in the festival,“ wrote director Ayo Tsalithaba, who hails from Ghana and Lesotho, in a post on Instagram on Thursday evening.


Climate change is attracting butterflies outside earlier: Due to climate change, butterflies in Central Europe are starting to fly earlier in the year and are also active for longer than in previous decades. Some species can now be observed almost all year round, which is aesthetically pleasing but has a negative impact on the ecological balance. Scientists from Austria, Poland and Germany report in the journal „Global Change Biology“ that many butterfly species can now be found in the landscape two to three weeks earlier than a few decades ago. Many species also have more generations per year. These findings come from analysing around 250,000 butterfly observations over the last 120 years in the Austrian province of Salzburg, a predominantly alpine region.

Global Water report – 2023 was an extreme year: Climate change has far-reaching effects on the global water cycle, as the recently published „Global Water Report 2023“ by the Global Water Monitor Consortium, in which the Vienna University of Technology played a key role, reveals on 11 January 2024. The report makes it clear that climate change had a significant impact on the global water cycle in 2023, characterised by extreme droughts in some areas and flooding in others. In addition, the extreme temperatures caused considerable damage to vegetation. The results for 2023 are particularly alarming: Record-breaking heatwaves swept regions from Canada to Brazil and from Spain to Thailand. The lack of rainfall and high temperatures exacerbated the record droughts in Mexico, South America and Central Asia. Heat and drought caused major ecological damage in the world’s largest forests, and massive forest fires devastated Canada in the summer. At the end of 2023, the Amazon basin experienced rapid degradation, with the soil drying out, with potentially dangerous consequences for the ecosystem.

This is how much climate change is costing us: Climate change is a cost trap. The warmer it gets on earth, the more the planet changes, the more expensive it becomes for humanity. A new report by the World Economic Forum (WEF), in collaboration with the international strategy consultancy Oliver Wyman, now provides concrete figures: By 2050, increasing natural disasters such as heatwaves and floods could ‑result in economic losses totalling ‑USD 12.5 trillion‑. ,

Forest and climate: The forest needs new trees.
The danger of trawls: In addition to the danger posed by plastic pollution and overfishing, trawl nets ensure that carbon stored in the seabed escapes and rises into the atmosphere in the form of CO2.
Coastal protection: Ever higher dykes will not be enough.



Thin jumper warms like a thick down jacket

A new combination of materials from a laboratory at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, China, may be able to help those who wish they had polar bear fur on their skin in the cosy winter weather. Researchers there have developed a yarn that resembles polar bear hair, but is far less thick when knitted into a jumper, for example.


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