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Red Line On Green Taxes: German Liberals Demand Abolition Of Green Energy Levy

PV Magazin

Energy policy is likely to become one of the most challenging issues in German coalition negotiations for a so-called Jamaica coalition between CDU, CSU, FDP and the Green Party. In an interview, the Treasurer of the Free Democratic Party (FDP) outlines his party’s red lines on energy and climate policy.

In the aftermath of Germany’s general election, negotiations between the CDU, the CSU, the FDP and the Greens will be held to form a so-called Jamaica coalition. In the run-up, the party is now trying to position itself. Hermann Otto Solms, the FDP’s treasurer, has set the “red lines” of his party with regards energy and climate politics. According to Solm, the Renewable Energy Levy (EEG) is costing every person more than €300 per year. “That is why we want to abolish the levy for new projects and reduce the electricity tax. We want to abolish subsidies and move to free markets and competition,” he told Der Tagesspiegel in an interview. This way energy prices would drop again.

One of the Green Party’s key demands is the phase-out of coal power generation in Germany. Solms, however, does not want to set any dates. He explains: “The sooner we succeed in satisfying the demand for electricity from renewable energies, the sooner we can get out of coal. This depends on grid expansion, intelligent distribution and storage facilities pressing ahead.” According to the FDP, the main instrument for climate policy is the EU’s emissions trading system. This should be tightened up and extended to include housing and transport. With regards the promotion of electric vehicles, the FDP does not want a ban on internal combustion engines. The sales figures of petrol car would drop if and when electric cars would become more competitive.

PV Magazin, 29 September 2017