Linking EU Climate and Energy Policies

Linking EU Climate and Energy Policies

Decision-making, Implementation and Reform

New Horizons in Environmental Politics series

Jon Birger Skjærseth, Per Ove Eikeland, Lars H. Gulbrandsen and Torbjørg Jevnaker

Based on an innovative theoretical framework combining theories of EU policy making, negotiation and implementation, this comprehensive book examines EU climate and energy policies from the early 1990s until the adoption of new policies for 2030. The authors investigate how the linking of climate and energy concerns in policy packages has facilitated agreement among EU leaders with very different policy ambitions. Employing in-depth studies from a diverse range of energy-economic countries, the book also explores the impact of the implementation of policies on the climate and energy policy framework and the Energy Union initiative.

Chapter 6: Implementation in Germany

Per Ove Eikeland

Subjects: environment, climate change, environmental politics and policy, politics and public policy, environmental politics and policy


Germany is a major player in the EU. This chapter examines German implementation of the EU climate and energy policy package for attaining 2020 goals: the extent to which and how these policies have been implemented, why and with what consequences for Germany’s positions on new EU climate policies. Germany has championed climate-policy development at national and EU levels, so one would expect good implementation performance. However, significant implementation problems emerged concerning the ESD, the CCS Directive and the ETS Directive. Adaptation pressure from the EU package because of misfit with national policies, negotiating position and national energy mix cannot explain these problems satisfactorily. The EU package was not a game-changer – Germany succeeded in uploading much of what it had favoured, and major parts of the package were readily absorbed with existing short- and long-term policies. Domestic politics proves important in explaining implementation problems: shifts in the German federal government, federal states as veto players, and horizontal and vertical administrative fragmentation. Still, Germany continued to support an ambitious EU policy package for 2030, reflecting its considerable positive experiences in implementing the 2020 package, particularly concerning renewable electricity production.

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