Our goals for the German EU Council Presidency

Flaggen von Deutschland und der EU

Our goals for the German EU Council Presidency

The goal of the Federal Environment Ministry over the next six months is to combine recovery from the crisis with climate action and nature conservation. The highest priorities for Germany’s Council Presidency this time are climate change mitigation, biodiversity and sustainable digitalisation. In addition, the Federal Environment Ministry will focus efforts on the implementation of the Green Deal to bring about the social and environmental recovery of our economy.

Climate action

Atmossphäre der Erde

Climate action will also continue to be our highest priority during the German Council Presidency. We support an EU Climate Law coupled with the aim of a greenhouse gas-neutral EU by 2050. We would also like to reach an agreement on a new EU target for lowering greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. This also includes EU commitment to stepping up climate targets this year, as envisaged in the Paris Agreement, by raising the 2030 target for the reduction of greenhouse gases from 40 percent to 50 to 55 percent.

Biodiversity

Mohnblume im Kornfeld

The state of biodiversity in the EU is important for our health, food supply and climate change mitigation. The European Commission Biodiversity Strategy contains goals and measures for biodiversity conservation. We are working to adopt Council conclusions on biodiversity conservation, which would represent a politically binding decision to prevent the loss of biodiversity, particularly among birds and insects.

Environmentally and climate-friendly digitalisation

Sätzling auf einem Computerchip

In recent weeks, Germany experienced a real boost in digitalisation. In the future, we would like to leverage digitalisation for environmental protection and climate action, for example, by deploying new technologies. In addition, we plan to shape the digital transformation sustainably by reducing, for example, energy consumption in data centres. We have worked together with the European Commission, representatives of European civil society and industry in a broad European process to develop proposals that we would like to discuss in the Council in the coming months. Our goal is for the EU to become a pioneer in sustainable digitalisation.

Other priorities:

Europa vernetzt

A resource-efficient and low-emission economy

In its Circular Economy Action Plan, the European Commission presented measures for a more resource-efficient EU economy, including more sustainable products with longer life spans and more efficient use of raw materials. The BMU will continue the work of the outgoing Croatian Presidency and will strive to reach a politically binding decision for a more resource-efficient and low-emission economy through the Council conclusions of the EU environment ministers.

A framework for EU environmental policy for the coming decade

For many decades, Environment Action Programmes have created the framework for EU environmental policy. The 7th Environment Action Programme will expire at the end of 2020. This is why the BMU is working to reach a swift agreement on an 8th Environment Action Programme. Unlike its predecessor, the 8th Environment Action Programme is expected to focus particularly on implementing and monitoring the EU environmental targets.