MCC discussion event on the air at rbb Inforadio

Can climate protection be socially just? Ottmar Edenhofer in conversation with Jörg Steinbach, Antje Kapek, Roman Zitzelsberger, and Klaus Müller.

Atmospheric setting: the MCC event "Designing climate policy in a socially balanced way" on 3 December in the Audimax of the EUREF Campus. | Photo: EUREF AG/Schwarz


A prominently booked and well attended panel discussed climate politics last week in the Audimax of the EUREF Campus in Berlin. 'As planned, the event is broadcast this Sunday in the series "Das Forum – die Debatte im Inforadio". The programme (in German) can be found online at this link.

The invitation to answer the question of “Designing climate policy in a socially balanced way: is that possible?” was jointly issued by MCC, EUREF AG, Munich Re Foundation and rbb Inforadio. MCC Director Ottmar Edenhofer discusses the issue with Brandenburg's Economics Minister Jörg Steinbach, Berlin Green Party Chairwoman Antje Kapek, Baden-Württemberg's IG Metall District Manager Roman Zitzelsberger, and Klaus Müller, Chairman of the Federation of German Consumer Organisations.

Edenhofer explains the scientific criticism of the recently launched climate package in Germany, highlighting a lack of effectivity and adverse distributional effects: “A carbon price must be the core instrument. Regulation alone will not succeed in achieving the climate goals for 2030 set in the context of the EU Effort Sharing legislation.” A courageously applied carbon pricing would also provide politicians with the financial means for a socially balanced refund. The concepts for implementation were available, he emphasizes, continuing that polarizing effects of climate protection necessarily dividing society into rich and poor or urban and rural factions belonged to the land of myths. Instead, the task now was to proactively shape the political process. 

Readjusting the newly drafted legislation is the subject of controversial discussion in the programme. Green politician Kapek asks us to bear in mind: “Avoiding implementation of climate policy – that is truly unjust because people without access to resources are most affected.” Consumer advocate Müller points out: “Within the climate package, only 15 Cent on the Euro go directly back to citizens, and that is too little!” Minister Steinbach advocates for a truly proactive management of structural change: “Politicians tend to produce empty compromises”. They were not yet prepared for the consequences that the fossil fuel phase-out will imply for the economy and the citizens. “This will be a huge challenge.” And IG-Metall representative Zitzelsberger emphasizes opportunities for the industry and its employees: "We should be frontrunners", he says, continuing that for example lead technologies of the future should “not be left to international competitors”.

Link to the programme (in German)