Germany Leading Research Study

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Research Study:  “Wirkungsanalyse bestehender Klimaschutzmaßnahmen […] und Klimaschutzprogramms der Bundesregierung.” “An Analysis of the Effects of Existing National Climate Protection Efforts,” produced by Umweltbundesamt, February 2016

Multiple policies have been enacted by Germany’s executive branch in order to further its efforts in meeting energy efficiency. One study carried out by the Umweltbundesamt—a German environmental protection agency—ran quantitative data and projections to determine the effectiveness of Germany’s different climate and energy policies. The report, titled “An Analysis of the Effects of Existing National Climate Protection Efforts,” uses forecasts for existing policies and compares them to actual reductions achieved by previous ones. The authors point to several short-comings that would inhibit Germany to meet some of its emissions targets, particularly those in the Energiewende and the Renewable Energy Act.

The study indicates that Germany will struggle to meet some emissions targets for several reasons. First, without an EU-wide database for energy-efficient products and labeling, the study suggests that demand-side energy inefficiency threaten targets, as consumers are less aware of which products to purchase. Second, Germany’s effort to refurbish its infrastructure through subsidization is said to be insufficient, given it does not include (a) a coaching network through which building owners can jointly submit refurbishment plans, or (b) subsidization for non-residential buildings (e.g. industrial sectors), which the authors believe could result in a tenfold energy cost-savings. Thirdly, renewable energy supply will only develop as fast as private energy actors are willing to invest in alternatives. This is notably difficult for states such as Saarland and Bremen, whose non-renewable energy production rates are among the highest proportion of their total energy production nationwide. Moreover, policies that aren’t binding towards HFCs, industrial processes, and agricultural practices have, either entirely or in part, failed to meet reduction targets. The issue here is that Germany has not yet established any reduction targets that are binding. Yet this may soon change given the recent enactment of the Kigali Agreement (October, 2016), where developed countries face obligations to achieve a reduction of 85% of HFC production by 2036.

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Mentioned studies:

For more on combined heat and power policy:

Germany’s involvement in the Kigali Agreement (2016):

Originally titled: Wirkungsanalyse bestehender Klimaschutzmaßnahmen und
Klimaschutzprogramms der Bundesregierung
I.e. a GHG reduction of 40% by 2020 and 80-95% by 2050
A family of man-made gases whose production are extensive across industrial uses


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