Expert: Germany must stand at the exit of the internal combustion engine | Free press

The fight to ban new internal combustion engines from 2035 is entering a decisive phase. Due to the ambiguous stance of the federal government, things started to change again. Environmentalists are concerned.

Brussels / Berlin.

In a poker game to ban new cars with internal combustion engines, Greenpeace calls on the federal government to vote “yes”. “It’s hard to imagine that Germany is bringing the EU’s climate plans to the brink of failure just because the FDP wants to save the internal combustion engine with expensive and completely ineffective synthetic fuels,” Greenpeace traffic expert Tobias Austrup told German news agency.

The federal government must stick to the clear wording of climate protection in the coalition agreement and work towards exit much earlier than in 2035. The date is too late to limit global warming to less than 1.5 degrees compared to pre-industrial times.

If EU countries agree to a plan to phase out internal combustion engines at Tuesday’s meeting of environment ministers, it will almost certainly come into force. Formally, there must still be an agreement with the European Parliament. However, this has already spoken in favor of the ban.

“Others will probably follow if Berlin does not vote to ban new cars with internal combustion engines by 2035,” an EU diplomat told DPA. The Süddeutsche Zeitung reported in its Friday edition that Italy, Portugal, Bulgaria, Romania and Slovakia have spoken out against the ban in the joint newspaper. “Italy would like to have a gap for luxury cars like the Ferrari,” said an EU diplomat. The Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung and the Handelsblatt also report other countries that may not agree to the project and may prevent it.

After a good two weeks ago, the European Parliament complied with the European Commission’s proposal to de facto ban the sale of new cars with internal combustion engines from 2035, a dispute has arisen in the federal government over the position of Germany. Environment Minister Steffi Lemke (the Greens) backed in March on behalf of the federal government, but now Finance Minister Christian Lindner (FDP) has questioned the position with new statements. On Industry Day in Berlin on Tuesday, he said he had decided that the federal government would not agree to this European legislation.

The essence of the dispute is the use of synthetic fuels, the so-called e-fuels. While the Greens want to allow e-fuels only in certain areas, such as aviation or special purpose vehicles, the FDP wants standard cars to be refueled with e-fuels in the future. Critics complain that running cars on synthetic fuels is much more energy-intensive than on purely electric fuels, and that there are not enough of them for aviation and shipping. (dpa)

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