The danger of a rebound in greenhouse gas emissions after the coronavirus crisis is looming on the horizon. Michał Dorociak and Michał Kamiński of 300Gospodarka, and Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf discuss in an OpEd for the EU Observer how the EU recovery programmes can avoid post-crisis emission increases.
In this paper the authors, among them Ecologic Institute's Ulf Stein, focus on the governmental bottlenecks in the Implementation of the European Water Framework Directive. The lack of horizontal, inter-sectoral communication; the insufficient land reserves; human resources and; the lack of financing were the areas that emerged as the most pressing issues. Further evidence suggests that the interaction of the WFD with other policy areas regulated at the European level might require closer inspection.
The EU recovery and resilience facility marks progress but has some shortcomings in climate policy, argues Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf in his OpEd for the Tagesspiegel. A bigger role for the European Parliament in the distribution of recovery funds is important – for climate protection and democracy in the EU. The facility's spending rules must be clarified.
This study examines approaches of a set of European Union member states to pursue a coordinated approach to climate change adaptation (CCA) policy. It specifically addresses the co-ordination approaches that the selected countries use for the development and implementation of their national CCA policies in the immediate period following the publication of the EU's 2013 Adaptation Strategy.
This article (written in German) examines various policies and approaches that are currently being implemented or planned as solutions to the plastics crisis. It becomes clear that in national and international policies plastics are mainly described as a problem of waste management and that solutions are oriented accordingly. As a consequence, there are numerous regulations for the recycling of plastic waste in Germany, while waste prevention is rarely addressed. The perception of the plastics crisis as a problem of waste management also leads to a transfer of responsibility to individuals, who, however, have only limited room for manoeuvre compared to industry and politics.
Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf comments on the EU corona aid package in Tagesspiegel Background. He calls for the EU Parliament to have a greater say in the matter and criticises that the aid programme is not sufficiently linked to the goal of climate neutrality by 2050.
The measures imposed by Berlin to contain the coronavirus pandemic are characterised by a pragmatic approach that poses less constraints on personal freedom than the measures adopted in other cities and countries. And yet it seems to be working. Support for small local businesses, solidarity and medical preparedness are at the heart of this approach. In this article, Doris Knoblauch from Ecologic Institute elaborates on the situation in the city of Berlin during the corona crisis.
What do environmentally friendly economic stimulus programs look like? In the Tagesspiegel, Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf takes stock of the stimulus packages adopted during the 2009 financial crisis. Stimulus packages should clearly exclude measures that harm the environment.
Faced with the COVID-19 crisis, there is great temptation for recovery plans to prop up yesterday’s economy. Instead, recovery plans and any economic stimulus must “build back better” and contribute to a resilient and sustainable future. In an EURACTIV op-ed, the directors of five leading think tanks and founders of the new Think Sustainable Europe network argue that any stimulus must be informed by science, strengthen resilience as well as solidarity, support the transformation towards low-carbon, sustainable societies and deal with the current challenges on an appropriate scale.
Local governments have little influence on short- and long-term climate policies taken at national and supranational levels. As the role of global cities is put to test by the Covid-19 pandemic, the need for an urgent and coherent management of the emergency in urban realities places further emphasis on the quest for sustainable urbanisation processes and strategies worldwide. Ewa Iwaszuk (Ecologic Institute) provides a commentary on the contribution of global cities to meeting the SDG13 within the ISPI Dossier "Global Cities in the Age of Covid-19: Agenda 2030 and Sustainable Development".
This article introduces the German Federal Environment Agency's online information platform on river restoration. It was designed, compiled and implemented between 2017 and 2020 by Ecologic Institute, Planungsbüro Zumbroich and IGF Jena. The information platform provides basic knowledge on the restoration of rivers and serves to gain acceptance for restoration measures. It addresses towns and municipalities, water management authorities, water bodies associations, fishing associations and citizens' groups.
To combat the Corona Crisis, states are pushing their limits. Nils Meyer-Ohlendorf argues in the Tagesspiegel that this should not happen in climate policy. There is no "what-ever-it-takes-response" to stop the advanced climate crisis but only swift and continuous action now.
The global community of think tank leaders is coming together for assistance and learning during the corona virus pandemic. R. Andreas Kraemer, Founder of Ecologic Institute, summarizes operational experience and focuses on the changing agenda for think tanks in these times of corona. The blog entry is part of a growing collection curated by the Think Tanks and Civil Societies Program (TTCSP) of the University of Pennsylvania.
In the European Union, hydropower represents an important component of a renewable energy transition, in part due to its existing infrastructure. A large share of future European hydropower projects will be run-of-the-river schemes. To understand the potential for RoR hydropower development and modernization of the technology as an opportunity for sustainable decentralization, this report uses the Q-methodology to compare public values about RoR hydropower in German, Portuguese and Swedish case studies.
While circular processes offer potential for small and large companies, such processes are not (yet) established across the board. For circular processes to be applied widespread, exchange between science and companies must be improved. As part of an national research project funding scheme on the sustainable economy, three workshops were dedicated to businesses and science actors to exchange information on sustainability innovations along value chains. This German paper summarises experiences made and lessons learned from these workshops.