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German Government’s coalition agreement 2021-2025: What can be the impact on environment and climate?

“We want to harness the potential of digitization for greater sustainability” – this is how the section on “Sustainability in digitisation” in the coalition agreement between the SPD, Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen and FDP begins. The 17 Global Sustainability Goals of the United Nations (SGD) are to be the guiding principles of government policy, and climate protection is to become a cross-cutting task.

The coalition agreement thus takes up where implementation on the ground often failed in the past: digitisation as an end in itself, sustainability as a vague goal, and climate protection as the task of others. Cross-departmental thinking was the exception rather than the rule.

Bringing these topics together – digitisation, climate protection, sustainability – opens up new potential and desirable support effects. (see also digitisation, climate protection & sustainability).

The new government wants to create more space for innovation, digitisation and private sector initiatives for climate adaptation. The actual success will depend on the extent to which the respective actors use this space. Innovations must be embraced, private-sector initiatives must be accepted as equally important, and digitisation must be seen as a process or tool for (better) achieving set goals.

The entire coalition agreement under the motto “Dare more progress.” This requires a new federal government and the will to do so at all decision-making levels.

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