Policies, measures and actions on climate change and
environmental protection in the context of COVID-19 recovery.
State Secretary at the Federal Ministry for the Environment
- Emergency measures in the short term (a few months to one year) to address concerns that have directly emerged from the COVID-19 pandemic and may include forced action.
- Socioeconomic measures in the medium term (one to a few years) with an environmental and climate focus to “build back better” from COVID-19, and usually involves planned, intentional action.
- Paradigm shifts and measures in the long term (more than a few years to a few decades) toward redesigning current socioeconomic and sociocultural systems to be sustainable and resilient.
1.Climate mitigation measures
RecoveryCOVID-19 Recovery Stimulus Packages
In June 2020, the German government launched an economic stimulus package not only to strengthen demand and secure employment, but also to help the economy to emerge from the crisis in a more climate-friendly manner. Under an “investment programme for the future”, investment grants of 50 billion euros will be channelled into sustainable mobility, energy transition, digitalisation, public health and research and education projects. Mobility and energy transition funds in particular are closely aligned with Germany’s Climate Action Package 2030. Germany is thus consistently pursuing the path towards a carbon neutral Germany in 2050.ContactDEU
Sustainable transportationRecoveryRedesignCOVID-19 Recovery Package Transportation
Sustainable transportation and mobility take up a large part of the German economic stimulus program to further enhance a climate proofed and future oriented transformation and decarbonization of the sector. The recovery package includes the following measures:
- Public transportation will receive an additional €2.5bn in 2020
- Deutsche Bahn will receive an equity increase of €5bn
- In order to accelerate the shift towards zero-emission vehicles, the Federal Government is doubling its share in the buyer’s premium for electric vehicles (new “innovation bonus”) of €2.2bn.
- An additional €2.5bn will be invested in expanding the charging infrastructure for electric vehicles, the promotion of research and development in the field of electric mobility and battery cell production
- The existing vehicle tax on passenger cars will take CO2 emissions stronger into account.
- To make urban mobility more environmentally friendly, funding for e-buses and their charging infrastructure will be increased until the end of 2021 and a fleet modernization program for busses and trucks will be launched of €1.2bnContactDEU
Sustainable transportationRecoveryRedesignFurthermore, during 2020 and 2021 a special fleet exchange program of €200 million will be launched targeting social service providers to promote electric mobility in urban areas and to support the non-profit organizations in upgrading their fleets.ContactDEU
Sustainable transportationRecoveryRedesignIn addition to the "Municipal Solidarity Pact 2020", municipalities are supported in their actions for more climate protection - for example in expanding cycling infrastructure. The municipal contribution for funding measures within the framework of the National Climate Protection Initiative will be reduced for a limited period until the end of 2021, by €50 million in 2020 and 2021, respectively.ContactDEU
Technological innovation (digitalization / hydrogen/ CCUS‚ etc.)RedesignThe national Hydrogen Strategy of Germany
The German national Hydrogen Strategy, which has been endorsed by the Federal Government in June 2020, will be funded with €7bn with the aim of establishing green hydrogen as part of Germany’s decarbonization strategy. The target is to establish industrial-scale electrolysis plants with a capacity , of 5GW , together with the required renewable energy sources, until 2030, with a goal of a further 5GW possibly until 2035 and not later than 2040. Germany will support the deployment of green hydrogen technologies, e. g. in energy intensive industries, transport and aviation, through dedicated funding schemes. An additional €2bn program will fund international partnerships with countries where green hydrogen can be produced with particular efficiency and PtX production are offering new perspectives for a sustainable domestic energy future, as well as for mutually beneficial trade.ContactDEU
Building sectorRedesignBuilding Sector and German national emissions trading scheme for fuel emissions
The German Buildings Energy Act sets a new, uniform and harmonised rulebook for energy efficiency and for the use of heat from renewables in buildings. At the same time, the Recovery stimulus package entails state funding for building renovations and the switch to renewable energies.
Starting in 2021, a national emissions-trading scheme will be introduced. It will cover all fuel-based emissions that are not covered by the EU-ETS (particularly heating and transport). For an initial period, between 2021 and 2025, certificate prices will be fixed, starting at 25€ in 2021 and rising annually to 55€ in 2025. Thus, there will be a reliable price path that will enable both citizens and the economy to adapt to the new development. . Revenues from the national emission trading scheme will be directed to fund programmes for GHG abatement and to lower the prices of electricity (thus compensating households and businesses and further fostering low-carbon technology deployment).ContactDEU
2.Climate adaptation measures
Adaptation planningRecoveryRedesignThe German Adaptation Strategy for Climate Change (DAS)
Since 2008 the aim of the DAS is to reduce the vulnerability of the German society, the economy and of the environment and to maintain or increase the adaptive capacity. Today, the strategy has become an established component of the Federal Government’s combined activities.The BMU-funding programme "Measures for Adaptation to Climate Change“ was initiated in 2011. Under the current funding directive, local and municipal actors, associations and small to medium-sized enterprises as well as educational institutions are supported in adaptation actions. Besides the existing DAS-funding programme, BMU will support strengthening the resilience of social institutions against already noticeable consequences of climate change such as periodic heat waves with a new funding programme (volume: 150 million euros) from 2020 until 2023. Social services providers include hospitals, nursing homes, schools and daycare centres, maternal health services and care services. The funding programme is part of the Federal Government's stimulus package and was adopted by the Federal Cabinet on 17 June 2020 as part of the covid-19 fiscal stimulus.
Note: The term adopted is used for non-legislative initiatives that have been adopted by the Commission. The term proposed is used for legislative initiatives that have been proposed by the Commission and are subject for approval and adoption through the EU's legislative decision-making procedures.ContactDEU
Urban/rural development (energy access etc.)RecoveryBMZ Initative “Green People’s Energy for Africa” (GBE)
This initiative aims to enable, expand and secure the supply of sustainable energy in rural Africa. The most challenging part of this will be the significant improvement of access to modern and renewable energy in remote off-grid areas with focus on communities and small entrepreneurs. By promoting decentralised and renewable energy solutions, the initiative not only fight against energy poverty in Africa, but also contributes to SDG13, 1, 3, 4 and 5 as well as SDG 8 and 17.Referencehttps://gruene-buergerenergie.org/ContactDEU
Urban/rural development (energy access etc.)RecoveryRedesignThe (international) City Climate Finance Gap Fund
Internationally investments in urban infrastructure present an opportunity to rebuild in a way that is climate friendly and that creates co-benefits for job creation, public health and overall well-being. The City Climate Finance Gap Fund that will be launched in September 2020 contributes to ensuring that cities recover from the pandemic while at the same time enhancing their climate resilience and retaining some of the benefits citizens have experienced from cleaner air and reduced pollution. The Gap Fund provides the technical assistance needed to turn climate-focused ideas into concrete urban project proposals. It is an initiative of and currently supported by Germany’s International Climate Initiative (IKI) of the Federal Ministry for the Environment (BMU), the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), as well as Luxembourg’s Ministry of the Environment, Climate and Sustainable Development. It is implemented by the European Investment Bank and the World Bank. With a target size of 100 mio. Euro, the Gap Fund will work with cities to unlock €4 billion of investments and implement their climate strategies. In the context of Green Recovery, other programmes have also received an additional budget increase, such as the Project Preparation Facility FELICITY that provides advisory services and capacity building tailored to the needs of municipalities and financial intermediaries in Brazil, Indonesia, Ecuador and Mexico as they struggle with the impacts of COVID-19.ContactDEU
COVID19 recovery and other environmental issuesResponseRecoveryRedesignThe (international) City Climate Finance Gap Fund (BMZ, BMU)
Internationally investments in urban infrastructure present an opportunity to rebuild in a way that is climate friendly and that creates co-benefits for job creation, public health and overall well-being. The City Climate Finance Gap Fund that will be launched in September 2020 contributes to ensuring that cities recover from the pandemic while at the same time enhancing their climate resilience and retaining some of the benefits citizens have experienced from cleaner air and reduced pollution. The Gap Fund provides the technical assistance needed to turn climate-focused ideas into concrete urban project proposals. It is an initiative of and currently supported by the Federal Ministry for the Environment (BMU) (and its International Climate Initiative IKI), the Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), as well as Luxembourg’s Ministry of the Environment, Climate and Sustainable Development. It is implemented by the European Investment Bank and the World Bank. With a target size of 100 mio. Euro, the Gap Fund will work with cities to unlock €4 billion of investments and implement their climate strategies.
BMU Corona Response-Package
As an immediate response, BMU has developed a Corona-Response-Package under its International Climate Initiative (IKI) to support IKI partner countries. BMU made available significant additional ad-hoc funding of 68 Mio. EUR. The measures focus on three focus areas:
• Emergency measures for nature reserves and biodiversity hotspots: Due to quarantine measures and lack of funds from tourism, communities such as indigenous groups are acutely at risk. Therefore, one focus of the measures is to provide financial support for the conservation of nature reserves and biodiversity hotspots and to mitigate the immediate consequences of the COVID 19 pandemic.
• Support for green economic recovery: economic advisors in twelve partner countries are financed to support planning and finance ministries in designing climate-friendly economic stimulus programmes. Additional support is given to ongoing IKI projects that have a special employment effect while laying the foundation for the integration of climate change and biodiversity aspects into long-term policies for economic development. To this end, the BMU will give additional funds to 16 IKI projects and adapt the content to include further nine projects. These projects focus on energy efficiency, renewable energies, urban development, and the mobilization of sustainable investments.
• The third part of the package focuses on the prevention of pandemics. The increasing occurrence of viral pandemics is closely linked to poaching and wildlife trafficking worldwide. In this context, considerable investments are needed to protect wildlife in order to prevent comparable pandemics by reducing the risk of zoonoses.
African Risk Capacity (BMZ): As part of its emergency COVID-19 support programme, BMZ assumes premium payments of around EUR 19 million for the drought insurance offered by the African Risk Capacity (ARC). This will reliably protect up to 20 million poor and vulnerable people in Africa against drought in the coming agricultural season and mitigate the risk of a compound crisis. BMZ is responding to this situation with its emergency COVID-19 support programme: Zimbabwe and four West African countries, which have to take out insurance cover already in June, will be provided with EUR 8.5 million for premium payments under ARC Replica. This will enable the World Food Programme and the START Network to take out ARC policies for Burkina Faso, The Gambia, Mali, Mauritania, and Zimbabwe. BMZ is further providing EUR 10.5 million for premium subsidies to countries in the south and east of the continent, where the insurance policy will not be taken out until the second half of 2020 due to the later planting season.
NDC Partnership (BMZ): Under the umbrella of the NDC Partnership, BMZ provided $6 million US dollars to support countries develop green recovery. These funds are used in two ways. First, to deploy advisors to ministries in NDCP selected member countries to support the climate-friendly design of economic stimulus packages.
Second, funds will be used by the World Bank to provide targeted analysis and advisory services for the design of climate-friendly budget support projects (“Development Policy Financing”) in selected NDCP member countries with the aim of reviving the countries’ economies from the pandemic. The funds will be administered by the World Bank’s NDC Support Facility, in close coordination with the NDC Partnership
Climate Change Capacity Development Program (BMZ): Within the BMZ and IMF climate cooperation, BMZ provides additional funding to support a green recovery. Aim of the Program is to boost capacities of finance ministries and central banks to design fiscal policies for climate change mitigation and adaptation, in paricular in respect to Covid19 recovery measures. The Program supports capacity development activities within the IMF’s mandate as well as knowledge sharing with government institutions, finance ministries and central banks on policy issues at the nexus of financial and economic stability and climate change.
Mobility (BMZ): The transport sector is both a major and fast-growing source of GHG-emissions and heavily affected by Covid-19-related lockdown measures. Green recovery in the transport sector can create jobs and make urban mobility more climate-friendly and sustainable at the same time, e.g. by making so-called popup-bike lanes permanent or improving public transport for all. Through its Transformative Urban Mobility Initiative (TUMI) and the Action towards Climate-friendly Transport (ACT), the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) is advocating for green recovery in the transport sector and facilitating capacity development.Referencehttps://www.international-climate-initiative.com/en/coronaresponse?iki_lang=en
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Burkina Faso
- Costa Rica
- El Salvador
- The European Commission
- The Marshall Islands
- The Netherlands
- New Zealand
- The Philippines
- Republic of Korea
- San Marino
- Sao Tome and Principe
- The United Kingdom