Today, the Federal Constitutional Court published its ruling on a number of constitutional complaints against the Federal Climate Change Act (Klimaschutzgesetz). It confirms that the Climate Change Act is in principle a suitable instrument for tackling the challenges of climate change. There will now be additional, specific provisions for the post-2030 period. However, Germany will already step up its planned climate action efforts in the years up to 2030 as a result of the new EU climate target. Federal Environment Minister Svenja Schulze welcomed the ruling as validation for the Climate Change Act and support for climate action.
Minister Schulze commented: "This decision clearly strengthens climate action. It provides momentum for tackling the difficult tasks ahead. The Federal Constitutional Court has reaffirmed the mechanism that we introduced with the Climate Change Act and that lays down annually decreasing emissions targets for all sectors. I would have liked to include an additional interim target for the post-2030 period but there was no majority support at the time. This is why it is a positive development that the Federal Constitutional Court is now ruling out the option of shying away from future action. The Federal Constitutional Court gives the legislator a clear mandate to establish clear legislative provisions beyond the year 2030 for the path to climate neutrality. To ensure we do not lose any time, I will present key elements for an updated Climate Change Act before the end of the summer to create long-term planning certainty.
The German government has taken many steps to improve climate action in recent years. During Germany's Presidency of the Council of the European Union in 2020, we were able to reach agreement on a significantly more ambitious EU climate target and to submit this to the United Nations. The new EU climate target will also make a considerable contribution to more climate action in Germany in the period up to 2030. For example, a stricter emissions trading scheme will greatly accelerate the energy transition away from fossil energy sources and towards renewable energies in the years ahead. By doing this, we can comply with the call from the Federal Constitutional Court to ensure that climate action measures are not delayed until a much later point in time".