Germany Mulls Options to Reduce Emissions

January 21, 2019 at 12:37 PM

Germany is considering several initiatives to meet European emissions requirements, Reuters reports.

Germany could incur hefty fines if it fails to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases and nitrogen oxides. Much of the problem is blamed on transportation-related emissions, which haven’t declined in the country since 1990.

The National Platform on the Future of Mobility outlined the proposals in a draft paper, according to the news agency. The committee has until the end of March to finalize its recommendations and present them to the government.

The committee estimates that it could achieve half the necessary emissions cuts through three measures: eliminating tax breaks for diesel cars, setting quotas for electrified vehicles and setting a 130 km/h (80 mph) speed limit on sections of the Autobahn that currently allow for unrestricted speeds.

The draft proposal also recommends raising fuel prices to encourage motorists to buy more efficient vehicles.

Noting that some of the proposals could face public opposition, the committee concedes it will take “political deftness, diplomatic skill and a willingness to compromise” to achieve climate change goals.