In its decision today, the Federal Constitutional Court has largely accepted the constitutional complaint of nine young people for a humane future: Freedoms and fundamental rights are already being violated today by insufficient climate protection. The legislator must adapt the Federal Climate Protection Act by the end of 2022. Lawyer Dr. Roda Verheyen (Hamburg), who represents the young people, comments on the decision: "Today, the Federal Constitutional Court has set a globally remarkable new standard for climate protection as a human right.
In addition to amplifying extreme weather events, climate change also causes or intensifies slow-onset processes such as sea-level rise, desertification, biodiversity loss or permafrost thaw. Both types of climate change impacts cause loss and damage, impede the enjoyment of human rights and can be drivers for human mobility. In contrast to extreme weather events, dealing with loss and damage caused by slow-onset processes in the context of climate change is still neglected – both at the national and international level. The publication series "Addressing Loss and Damage from Slow-Onset Processes" responds to this challenge and aims to foster awareness of the urgency to act in this area and provide input for processes at the national and international levels.
In the upcoming week, the 13th meeting of the WIM ExCom will take place (April 27-30 2021). One very important issue to discuss will be – among other issues – the work of the Expert Groups as they play a major role in carrying out the activities of the ExComs workplan. Especially the work on Action and Support, Slow-onset Events and Non-economic Losses will be discussed and concrete steps for developing the respective workplans with concrete activities will have to be decided upon. The meeting will take place in a virtual format and even over one year in the COVID-19-pandemic this setting still poses some substantive challenges to the discussions and inclusiveness as well the involvement of observers.
The COVID-19 pandemic has advanced into the biggest global health crisis in recent human history and exacerbated existing challenges for developing countries. Nonetheless, poorer nations are still showing remarkable commitment to dealing with the climate crisis. As the pandemic continues, developing countries are increasingly reaching their limits. Additional international climate finance post-2020 is needed to respond to the climate, health, and debt crises, after developed countries already failed to deliver on the USD 100 billion. At the upcoming US Climate Leaders Summit and the Petersberg Climate Dialogue, developed countries need to step up their game on international climate finance. The blog presents clear asks for Germany!
Despite COVID, climate change and the zero-carbon transition are still high on the agenda of societies, companies and governments in the EU and also Germany. The EU is progressing with its European Green Deal plan in order to significantly accelerate the speed of the economic transition. But can the EU and Germany maintain a high transition speed in the years to come? Or is there a substantial likelihood, other issues may squeeze the climate agenda out of the top priorities, governments and businesses take care of? In his article "Germany's Green Transition: Will It Continue?" Oldag Caspar analyses this question for the leading Russian foreign policy think tank Valdai Club.
This year will be key for future climate policy and especially for sustainable finance in Germany and Europe. Sustainable Finance plays a crucial role in improving climate protection and sustainable growth. To this end, Germanwatch joined forces with the Alliance for Corporate Transparency in order to push towards greater corporate responsibility and disclosure requirements to meet the EU and Paris climate targets. In the second article of our briefing series "Full Disclosure: Monthly Briefing on EU Corporate Transparency Regulation", we aim to shed light on the revision the EU Non-Financial Reporting Directive carried out by the European Commission.
Development banks not only provide finance directly to specific projects, they also channel funds to financial intermediaries in developing and emerging economies. Development banks have committed to align themselves with the Paris Agreement. While they have made (some) progress with establishing Paris lending criteria for their direct lending activities – clear rules and guidance for how to align “intermediated lending” with the Paris Agreement remains a gap. This Blog provides a rational for Paris alignment of MDBs’ intermediated lending and proposes a phased approach that development finance institutions can follow to fulfil their commitments.
Many people in Europe are willing to shift from air to rail - even for international travel and often even if they have to accept significantly longer travel times. This is shown by a new representative survey conducted by the opinion research institute YouGov in Germany, Poland, France, Spain and the Netherlands. The survey, commissioned by Transport&Environment and Germanwatch, was published to mark the official start of the European Year of Rail 2021 on March 29.
On 29 March, the Portuguese EU Council presidency officially launches the European Year of Rail. Germanwatch and other European NGOs have send an open letter to the Commission and the Portuguese presidency to call for a European rail renaissance. The EU and the member state governments need to use the European Year of Rail 2021 to give a boost to cross-border passenger rail, with the following measures:
For a year and a half, representatives from the real economy, the financial sector, academia and civil society fought hard to reach an agreement on how Germany could become a prime hub for sustainable finance . On February 25, the final report of the German government's Sustainable Finance Advisory Council (SFB) was published, with ambitious recommendations on how to make the financial market more sustainable: Shifting the Trillions - A Sustainable Financial System to facilitate the Great Transformation. It is now the government's turn to translate the recommendations into an effective strategy and initiate the first legislative changes before the end of this legislative term.
Short about the CO2 intensive lifestyle of a metropolitan. Directed by Peter Wedel with Benno Fürmann.