to the German edition
Again quarrel – After heating decision at FDP party conference – Greens demand „serious government policy“: The Liberals oppose the planned heating law of the traffic lights. The Greens react annoyed and refer to the coalition agreement. In his attacks on the Minister of Economics, Frank Schäffler was repeatedly interrupted by the applause of his party colleagues. „Economic nonsense“, he said, was the law on the planned ban on the installation of oil and gas heating systems. „Technically unworkable in large parts,“ the member of the Bundestag said at the FDP party conference. „More than 80 per cent of people reject Mr Habeck’s plans,“ Schäffler claimed. He said they were „an attack on the property of the people in this country“. The Greens are annoyed by the process: He has „understanding for party tactics“, said Andreas Audretsch, deputy leader of the Greens, but: „At the same time, I assume that Christian Lindner has a high interest in continuing serious government policy from Monday onwards“, said Audretsch. tagesspiegel.de
CO₂ neutrality would only cost industry 52 billion euros: Industrial companies are among the largest CO₂ emitters in Germany. But according to a study, this could be changed with manageable investments in a few sectors. The iron and steel industry (16.7 billion euros), the pulp and paper industry (16.3 billion euros) and the chemical industry (9.5 billion euros) would have to shoulder the lion’s share. „The manufacturing sector is an important adjusting screw for an ultimately successful energy transition and compliance with the climate targets,“ says Allianz Trade economist Markus Zimmer. „Although decarbonisation has its price, it could help the local industry to significantly improve planning security.“ spiegel.de , Study
700,000 litres of water for the training of GPT-3
According to one study, „training GPT-3 in one of Microsoft’s modern high-performance computing centres in the US could have consumed around 700,000 litres of water“, which is roughly equivalent to the production of 320 Teslas. And for every conversation with ChatGPT, which averages between 20 and 50 questions, a good half-litre of drinking water goes to waste, the researchers estimate. Since companies such as OpenAI, Microsoft and Google do not provide official information on the power and water consumption of their AI applications, practically all studies on this topic are based on estimates using various key technical data. heise.de
New organic label for restaurants and canteens to strengthen organic farming: Last Wednesday, a new regulation by Federal Minister of Agriculture Cem Özdemir found its way into the federal cabinet. In canteens, cafeterias and restaurants, guests are to be able to recognise the organic content of the food in future by means of a new state label. The regulations are also intended to make it easier for providers of out-of-home catering to participate in organic certification of products and ingredients. Regulations on controls are also planned. Özdemir said that mass catering facilities with 17 million guests daily have a huge potential to provide young and old with healthy, nutritious and sustainable food. With the new logo, providers could label the organic content voluntarily, simply and verifiably. taz.de, zeit.de
The federal government is working on a sovereign wealth fund to secure raw materials: Germany is 90 per cent dependent on imports for important raw materials. Big players in the market are countries like Russia and China. According to insiders, Berlin is planning to invest billions in more independence. The federal government is creating new facts in its plans to become more independent of imports from countries like China or Russia, if the traffic light coalition allows it: As the US financial agency Bloomberg reports, citing insiders, the government is considering setting up a fund to finance the extraction of raw materials. It is to be endowed with one to two billion euros. The fund is part of Economics Minister Robert Habeck’s new raw materials strategy, which also includes the revival of domestic mining in Germany. n-tv.de , businessinsider.de
Parliament approves emissions trading reform: The EU Parliament has approved several important climate protection laws with a broad majority. Among other things, MEPs voted in Strasbourg for a tightening of emissions trading. This is considered the most important instrument of the European climate protection programme. This and other projects are at the heart of the „Fit for 55“ package, which the European Commission presented in summer 2021 to fight climate change. It is intended to help EU countries reduce CO2 emissions by 55 percent by 2030 compared to 1990 and become climate neutral by 2050. The EU states still have to approve the plan, but this is considered a formality. tagesschau.de
Environmental Aid considers LNG plans on the island of Rügen to be unlawful: at least that is what a new report commissioned by the German Environmental Aid (DUH) claims. The German government wants to create more infrastructure for liquefied natural gas (LNG) on Germany’s coasts. To this end, the Bundestag passed the LNG Acceleration Act just under a year ago, which the government now apparently intends to expand with an amendment. „The LNG Acceleration Act is in large parts contrary to European law,“ writes lawyer Cornelia Ziehm in her expert opinion. „It is based on assumptions that are now outdated or were incorrect from the beginning.“ Among other things, it violates European law that the federal government is relaxing environmental protection so that the terminals can be built quickly. taz.de
BOOK TIP OF THE WEEK:
The hidden tricks of the ecology brakemen. How we can stop putting our environment at risk
Eco-labels ensure transparency, production is „climate-neutral“, purchases are „packaging-free“, and the plastic waste in the oceans is „collected and recycled“ – if you believe the advertising brochures and PR campaigns, you might think that we have long since got a grip on environmental protection. Often, however, this is little more than professional cheating.
Reinhard Schneider, head of Werner & Mertz with the well-known brand FROSCH, had to watch as an entrepreneur how not only large corporations practice green label fraud and consumers are all too happy to be deceived. Now he exposes the systemic failure of business, politics and society in environmental protection. He describes his own path to a sustainable economy and opens a debate on what concrete solutions look like and how we can create a truly sustainable future together. oekom.de
After nuclear phase-out: real-time map shows where our electricity now comes from after nuclear phase-out. chip.de
Gas shortage in winter? If the next winter is very cold, Germany will have a gas supply problem, according to new model calculations. faz.net
Habeck: Criticises New Climate Protests by Last Generation.spiegel.de
Habeck II: „The heat turnaround must begin now with new heating systems. welt.de
Housing in Germany: „Housing construction is in danger of crashing“: Construction industry at tipping point. wiwo.de
Smart Meter: Bundestag makes digital electricity meter compulsory. t-online.de
Scholz and Habeck: Promote LNG terminal on Rügen. welt.de
Climate activist after verdict: „I don’t want to go to prison“ t-online.de
Missed climate targets: Traffic lights still in climate cline. No immediate programme for transport. taz.de
FDP man Kubicki: Improvements in heating systems necessary. fair-economics.de
Claudia Kemfert: Germany’s most prominent energy expert and her green bias. focus.de
The Graichen clan: The state secretaries are related by marriage, family members provide expert opinions. spiegel.de
Forest protection: EU wants only forest-friendly products.tagesspiegel.de
Expert Council report: 2022 climate targets only partially achieved. tagesschau.de
The seventeen goals magazine tells inspiring stories about how people move the world and shows how everyone can contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
PODCAST OF THE WEEK:
The unequal crisis: Why climate change hits women harder
The climate crisis affects the entire planet and its inhabitants equally – that’s not quite true. Because studies show: Women and people from marginalised groups in particular feel the consequences of the crisis more strongly. Why is that? And what needs to change for more climate justice? In this podcast episode, Ndivile Mokoena, a women’s rights activist from South Africa, reports on her experiences as a mother with the increasing water shortage and how she helps women in the climate crisis. Together with Farina Hoffmann from the NGO GenderCC – Women for Climate Justice, the podcast also explains the factors behind the unequal impact and looks at political attempts at change. spiegel.de
COMMENT OF THE WEEK:
Expert Council shows Transport Minister Wissing the red card again
On the occasion of the publication of the Expert Council on Climate Issues on greenhouse gas emissions 2022 and the classification of the Climate Protection Act, Olaf Bandt, Chairman of the Bund für Umwelt und Naturschutz Deutschland (BUND), explains:
„The traffic light government is being punished by its own council of experts. Germany continues to lag behind in climate protection. Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing in particular has not done his homework. But instead of sticking to law and order, he wants to grind the rules. The coalition partners go along with him. But it gets worse: instead of more climate protection in transport, Wissing’s plan is to accelerate the expansion of up to 1200 kilometres of motorways and even more CO2 emissions and destruction of nature. Wissing is taking the coalition down a multi-lane dead-end road on climate protection.
The Council of Experts confirms the Federal Environment Agency’s emissions calculations for 2022. The building sector also misses its targets. The sector of Construction Minister Klara Geywitz has thus remained true to itself for three years now. BUND calls on both ministers to use their three-month deadline to finally propose effective climate protection measures. We also share the criticism and concern of the Council of Experts regarding the possible weakening of the Climate Protection Act. We call on the members of the Bundestag to keep their hands off the softening of departmental responsibility and the steering mechanism and not to abandon the sectoral targets. Otherwise, we see black for the 2030 climate targets.“ bund.net
Study proves high economic benefit of a speed limit: Another study shows a positive effect of a speed limit. According to the authors, it would have economic benefits in addition to positive effects on climate protection. According to a new study, a speed limit of 130 kilometres per hour would have a high economic benefit in addition to the climate protection effect. This would result in so-called welfare gains for Germany of at least 950 million euros per year. In particular, fuel savings, fewer accidents, lower supply chain costs and savings in infrastructure would be relevant in addition to the climate protection effect. zeit.de , Study
Premiums for newer forms of transport such as autonomous vehicles or car sharing will rise to over half a trillion US dollars by 2030: As the Capgemini Research Institute’s World Property and Casualty Insurance Report shows, clients and regulators are placing increased emphasis on sustainability. Policyholders worldwide show interest in connected vehicles and those with alternative drives (66 percent) as well as autonomous driving (49 percent). While they are not yet ready to replace their private vehicles in the short term, the desire for new complementary mobility options is growing. According to the study, it is expected that in 2025 twice as many city dwellers will use micromobility, shared vehicles and multimodal transport solutions, at 58 percent compared to 29 percent today. In Germany, the figure is expected to more than double at a lower level – from 16 to 38 percent. According to the analysis, this changing mobility behaviour will lead to an eightfold increase in ACES vehicle insurance premiums by 2030 – from 70 billion to 570 billion US dollars. capgemini.com
Chinese manufacturer builds aircraft battery: Some engineers say that the future of climate-friendly aviation lies in battery-powered aircraft. A manufacturer from China now claims to have developed the right battery. spiegel.de
Aviation: Climate-neutral flying will cost the industry hundreds of billions. The aviation industry was late to address the issue of sustainability. As a result, emission-free flying in Europe is becoming expensive – also for passengers. handelsblatt.com
Railways cash in: When wind or solar parks are connected, the cables often have to be laid under railway lines. The railway obviously senses a business opportunity and wants a share of the revenue. This costs the park operators hundreds of thousands of euros. It thus jeopardises Germany’s expansion plans with renewable energies. wiwo.de
Rapid changes in mobility: Germans drive their cars for almost ten years on average. During this time, the car world is changing. Those who remain loyal to their cars for a long time may be surprised when they get their next vehicle: many things they have grown to love and many things they hate will be gone. tagesschau.de
Energy-intensive industry plans decarbonisation through climate-friendly produced hydrogen: Hydrogen produced with low CO2 emissions is emerging as one of the most promising tools for decarbonising energy-intensive industries. A new study shows that 62 percent of companies are looking into switching to hydrogen produced with low CO2 emissions. energie.de
Southern Germany: German industry’s preparations for a hydrogen economy are gaining momentum, according to a study by strategy consultants PwC Strategy. „However, the south of the republic is threatened by a supply gap,“ warned the energy experts in Munich. wiwo.de
The Netherlands and NRW – A hydrogen hub for the whole of Europe? The Netherlands is one of Germany’s three largest gas suppliers. Experts also see great potential in green hydrogen. Together, the Netherlands and NRW can become an important „Hydrogen Valley“ in Europe. A huge gas field in the province of Groningen has made the Netherlands a „big player“ in European gas. Because of environmental problems and earthquake hazards, gas production has long been hotly disputed among our neighbours. What began hopefully in the 1960s is now long outdated. n-tv.de
Solar reactor produces hydrogen, heat and oxygen: A special solar reactor has been developed in Switzerland that simultaneously produces hydrogen, heat and oxygen. The researchers speak of a „really encouraging step“. t3n.de
Why the demand for green hydrogen threatens Africa’s energy supply: Maria Pastukhova, an expert from climate think tank E3G, says the rules would allow hydrogen projects to „cannibalise“ existing local infrastructure for export purposes. „In many countries, especially in Africa, this energy is needed at home, where grids need to be decarbonised or citizens don’t have access to electricity,“ she added. In 2022, only 56 percent of Namibians had access to electricity. The country imports 60 to 70 per cent of its electricity needs, most of which comes from fossil fuels. The southern African country is on track to become Africa’s first green hydrogen export hub, but faces high unemployment and one of the world’s most unequal economies, according to the World Bank. euractiv.de
Hydrogen is a huge opportunity for plant engineering: Oliver Weimann, President of the German Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Association: „The Delegated Act could have been better, but it is not as bad as some drafts were before. We can live with this compromise for now; the lack of a definition for green hydrogen and thus the uncertainty of its eligibility for greenhouse gas reductions was one of the biggest obstacles to investment. Nevertheless, it remains to be seen how the industry will now position itself with regard to large-scale plants. The temporal correlation, according to which electrolysis capacities must also be matched by additional generation capacities for renewably generated electricity, is now more generous than in the original draft. The obligation to build additional renewable generation capacity to meet the electricity demand of electrolysis is suspended until 2028. This is welcome, as it takes an average of eight years to build a new offshore wind farm. Nevertheless, there remain bellyaches here.“ chemietechnik.de
LAST WEEK IN THE BUNDESTAG:
Committee votes for state animal husbandry label: The Committee on Food and Agriculture has cleared the way for the first step of a state animal husbandry label. On Wednesday morning, the MPs passed the federal government’s bill (20/4822) in an amended version with the votes of the SPD, Alliance 90/The Greens and FDP factions against the votes of the CDU/CSU faction, the AfD faction and the Die Linke faction. After years of debate, there is now to be a binding label for unprocessed pork, so that the consumer can see at the shop counter how the animal was kept. The meat is to be labelled with the five husbandry levels: stable, stable and space, fresh air stable, free range/pasture and organic. „The introduction of the Animal Husbandry Labelling Act is to be accompanied by a comprehensive information campaign,“ says the motion for a resolution of the Ampel parliamentary groups.
Minister Wissing defends traffic report: Federal Transport Minister Volker Wissing (FDP) has defended the transport forecast presented by his ministry at the beginning of March. The forecast’s finding that freight traffic on the roads will increase by 54 percent by 2051 is not an attempt to undermine climate protection goals, Wissing told the transport committee on Wednesday. This accusation, which has been raised in the public debate, is „absurd“. The decisive factor for the predicted increase in truck traffic on the roads is the structural change in freight transport. Due to the energy turnaround, there is a strong decline in bulk and energy goods such as coal, coke, mineral oil products and ores, which have so far been transported mainly by rail and waterway. On the other hand, the delivery of small parcels is steadily increasing as a result of rising orders from internet retailers. These parcels, however, could not be transported by rail. Citizens, however, would expect their orders to be delivered within one or two days, Wissing stressed. The delivery of smaller parcels would increase by 300 per cent. With the current state of the railways and the rail network, the railways would not be able to accommodate the additional traffic, despite all the expansion plans. Lorry traffic on the roads would therefore remain the largest sector of freight traffic in the future. For this reason, the expansion of the road infrastructure must be accelerated. It is all the more important to make road freight transport climate-neutral as quickly as possible, for example by using new types of drive instead of fossil fuel engines, said Wissing.
Government parliamentary groups present bill on barn conversion: In order to advance the Animal Husbandry Labelling Act, the parliamentary groups of SPD, Bündnis 90/Die Grünen and FDP have now also presented a draft bill (20/6422) to adapt the building planning law for the conversion of animal husbandry facilities. The paper states: „The draft law takes up the new forms of husbandry introduced by the Animal Husbandry Labelling Act in terms of building planning law.“ The compromise reached by the governing parties at the end of March provides for privileges under building law for companies that want to convert their livestock facilities in order to upgrade their existing animal husbandry to a higher level. According to the bill, the conversions would be valid for the husbandry levels three, four and five mentioned in the Animal Husbandry Labelling Act – i.e. the fresh air barn, outdoor/ pasture or organic as well as barns that were built commercially after 2013 and no longer had agricultural privileges. Livestock farmers do not have to reduce their stock if they want to change to higher animal husbandry levels. It is also possible that a new replacement building can be erected at a different location than the old building. This should make it possible for the farms to keep their existing livestock during the construction work. It was also planned that after completion the old stables would have to be removed and possible soil sealing would have to be removed.
Rules for food advertising directed at children: Advertising for all foods should remain possible; however, advertising directed at children for foods with high sugar, fat or salt content should be regulated in the future. This is stated by the Federal Government in its answer (20/6234) to a minor question (20/5962) of the AfD parliamentary group. With this project, the Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (BMEL) is „implementing a corresponding mandate from the coalition agreement of the SPD, Bündnis 90/Die Grünen and FDP“, the answer states. In doing so, the BMEL assumes a fundamentally broad regulatory approach, taking into account relevant scientific expertise. According to the BMEL’s regulatory plans, advertising for all foods should remain possible; only foods with high sugar, fat or salt content should not be advertised to children. In addition, advertisers should continue to have the possibility to advertise to children for foods that are not high in sugar, fat or salt. According to the plans of the BMEL, the assessment of a high sugar, fat or salt content should be based on the requirements of the nutrient profile model of the World Health Organisation (WHO). Scientific studies have shown that advertising for unbalanced foods has a negative effect on the nutritional behaviour of children in particular.
Committee discussed food supply in the future: All experts at a hearing of the Committee on Food and Agriculture agreed on Monday that food supply must be secured. How the way to achieve this and the result of an adjustment of agricultural production as well as food production will look like in the future, was a matter of disagreement among the total of eight experts. During a public hearing, the motion of the CDU/CSU parliamentary group entitled „Securing food supply – maintaining self-sufficiency in Germany and Europe“ (20/5215) was discussed in detail on Monday afternoon. more on bundestag.de
Deindustrialisation is a risk, but not because energy prices or taxes are too high for companies. We see how powerfully the USA and China are expanding their green technologies. The big question is whether the German economy will also succeed in becoming ecological, digital, efficient with green technologies. At the moment, it doesn’t look like it will make the transition. This is true for the automotive sector, the chemical sector and many others. That worries me a lot.
Marcel Fratzscher, scientist, author and columnist,President of the German Institute for Economic Research (DIW Berlin), to be innovative, companies would have to compete. They need good investment conditions, a good framework. The federal government subsidises companies and thus cements outdated structures. No country has greater exceptions to EU state aid rules than Germany. This is the wrong way to go. Money alone does not create innovation. During the pandemic and now in this crisis, the German government had given such huge subsidies, especially for fossil fuels, to its companies that its neighbours were right to complain about an unfair competitive advantage for German companies. This protectionism, i.e. throwing money at companies and not forcing them into global competition, means that they will first make a few years of rich profits and then in five years they will call for more state money and need support. But that, he said, was a misguided approach. The state must help them with research and development. And specifically in projects that really have synergies across industries and companies. augsburger-allgemeine.de
I do a thousand things that are way outside my comfort zone. It’s not like I was born to be an activist. It’s an emergency solution and we make the best of it. We’re fighting fossil corporations and vested interests and political sentiments, and we have insanely little time. I think it’s our duty to learn from each other as quickly and as well as we can, and to be smarter, fairer and more creative than everyone else in order to have any chance of standing up to them.
Luisa Neubauer, climate activist, when we first registered a demo, she had no idea how to do it. Her experience is that when you know what you want and the time has come, it’s a matter of first getting loose and learning along the way. But for heaven’s sake – we would need millions of people doing a very little bit of activism, not three activism professionals who, after 20 years of training, would have the perfect outreach skills! vogue.de
Fighting global warming: Loans for climate projects drive up Africa’s debt: Rarely has there been so little unanimity at a spring meeting of the IMF and World Bank in Washington as this time. In its latest global forecast, the IMF expects the economy in sub-Saharan Africa to grow by only 3.6 percent this year. This is likely to further exacerbate the debt situation on the continent. Warning of a „major financing bottleneck,“ Abebe Aemro Selassie, Africa director at the IMF, told a press conference in mid-April. „We are committed to the region as never before,“ he continued. But the financial Africa engagement of international financial institutions like the IMF and World Bank is increasingly limited to loans and bonds. Equity capital for investment projects in Africa is becoming increasingly difficult to obtain from the various funding institutions. At the same time, however, the developed countries want to involve the African continent more in the fight against climate change. If these projects continue to be financed through bonds and loans, many countries in Africa are threatened with a fatal debt trap – especially since the economically weakest countries on the continent are at the same time the ones most affected by the climate crisis. fr.de
Battlefield for influence: China is making inroads in Africa. The USA is alarmed and is stepping up its efforts. ipg-journal.de
Sudan: France, the Netherlands and the USA fly diplomatic staff and Western citizens out of Sudan. Heavy fighting in the East African country has recently left many people dead. Western countries are stepping up the pace in evacuating their compatriots from Sudan, which has been rocked by severe unrest. During the evacuation of the US embassy in the capital Khartoum, all US personnel were flown out at the weekend. Some diplomats from other countries were also on board, according to representatives of the US government. In total, less than a hundred people were involved. A considerable number of local workers remained in Sudan. They flew in and out of Sudan without incident, a US military official said. A representative of the US State Department added that the situation in Sudan was not expected to change any time soon. tageblatt.lu
Why China is so strongly committed to Africa: Africa is the mother continent of humankind and the cradle of its raw materials: its wealth of mineral resources amounts to around 30 percent of global mineral reserves and is therefore interesting for energy-hungry China. The transformation of the coming decades, especially digitalisation and decarbonisation, are dependent on Africa’s resources and natural conditions. finanzmarktwelt.de
Kenya is the third most renewable country on the African continent with the highest electricity generation from solar and wind energy. Recent data from energy think tank Ember shows that the country’s 16 per cent share of renewable energy sources is only behind Namibia (25 per cent) and Morocco (17 per cent). With other sources of power generation proving unsustainable due to global warming, Kenya has been focusing on hydropower (30 per cent) and geothermal (45 per cent) power generation since 2017. In 2022, 90 percent of Kenya’s electricity will therefore come from renewable sources. Wind power will account for 14 per cent of Kenya’s electricity generation in 2022 (1.7 TWh), up from just 0.6 per cent in 2017 (0.1 TWh), thanks to the development of Africa’s largest wind project supported by international funding. „The stage is set for a meteoric rise of wind and solar. Clean electricity will transform the global economy, from transport to industry and beyond,“ said Mal̸gorzata Wiatros-Motyka, senior electricity analyst at Ember. allafrica.com
The oceans are absorbing more and more nitrogen from fertilisers: nitrogen compounds are the main component of fertilisers used in agriculture. However, a large proportion of the fertiliser does not reach the plant, but migrates into the water cycle and from there into the sea. Now, a study in the scientific journal „PNAS“ reports that the annual input in the form of ammonia increased by about 89 percent in 2018 compared to 1970. Especially in coastal regions, ammonia is now ahead of nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from the combustion of fossil fuels, reports the predominantly Chinese research team led by Lei Liu from Lanzhou University. The over-fertilisation of the oceans has become a global problem. derstandard.at
Sustainable classification -What the EU taxonomy is all about: With the taxonomy rules, the EU Commission sets uniform standards for ecological management: As an ambitious goal of the European Green Deal, the EU is to do without greenhouse gas emissions as far as possible by 2050 at the latest. To achieve this goal, billions of euros of public and corporate investments in ecologically sustainable activities are necessary. The EU taxonomy is a classification system that maps the EU’s six environmental goals into a catalogue of criteria. In this way, climate-impacting economic activities or investments are clearly defined. It also deals with reporting obligations for companies. deutschlandfunk.de
Those who are poor live dangerously: a study in the United States shows that in 2019 at least 183,000 deaths of people over the age of 15 will be linked to poverty. This makes prolonged poverty in particular one of the four leading causes of death in the United States, which has a far higher poverty rate than comparable democracies. Only heart disease, cancer and smoking claim more victims. Poverty is linked to potentially life-threatening lifestyles as well as poor nutrition and greater exposure to environmental factors that are harmful to health. Poorer people’s workplaces are also typically more accident-prone and disease-producing. fair-economics.co.uk
Climate targets: How the EU’s tougher emissions trading works.handelsblatt.com
Information and art: New York now has a climate change museum. monopol-magazin.de
Indonesia: Asian infrastructure investment bank explains its role in the controversial Mandalika project. fair-economics.de
Overtourism: South Tyrol is at its limit. Drastic limits are now being imposed on the huge influx of visitors. t-online.de
25.4. 2023 – International Arbor Day
Arbor Day originated as early as the mid-19th century in tree-poor Nebraska. Traditionally, tree planting was carried out on this day. On 27 November 1951, the United Nations finally adopted Arbor Day. Its purpose is to keep people aware of the importance of forests for people and the economy. The German „Arbor Day“ was first celebrated on 25 April 1952. Federal President Theodor Heuss and the President of the Schutzgemeinschaft Deutscher Wald, Federal Minister Robert Lehr, planted a maple in the Hofgarten in Bonn.
26.4. 2023 – International Noise Awareness Day
The „Day against Noise“ has been taking place since 1998, because noise is an underestimated health hazard. Heavy or permanent noise can make people ill, it impairs their performance and quality of life. High noise pollution not only causes disturbances and annoyances, it can also lead to relevant health risks, especially for the cardiovascular system. Noise is a socially relevant problem. The noise exposure of the population must be reduced. The motto of this year’s day of action is: „Turn it down“.
Energy transition: 60,000 heating installers missing from the industry
The German Sanitation, Heating and Air Conditioning Association sees an increased demand for skilled workers. However, this is not solely due to the energy transition. The federal government’s plans for the switch to renewable heating energies are no cause for concern for the heating industry. „A lot of what you need to know to install a heat pump has long been known to the companies and is also taught in training,“ said Helmut Braman, General Manager of the German Sanitation, Heating and Air Conditioning Association (ZVSHK). However, there would be a shortage of about 60,000 heating installers to cover not only the demand in this sector, but also that resulting from demographic change. Already today, almost 100,000 additional jobs could be filled in the sanitary, heating and air-conditioning trade (SHK), according to a recent analysis by the association. Of these, 41,000 were fitters, 27,000 technical staff and 31,500 apprentices. To meet the policy goal of installing 6 million heat pumps in private buildings by 2030, there would be a shortage of 60,000 fitters in that period alone. In addition, there would be a need for 26,000 commercial employees. heise.de
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