+49 6782 17 19 41

Höfken: "Advance the European energy turnaround from within the Greater Region"

Environment Minister Ulrike Höfken presents interregional climate protection projects of the Greater Region in Brussels / Federal Government must remove obstacles

"Only together we can implement energy transition and more climate protection at regional and supraregional level. To this end, the opportunities that the EU gives us must be meaningfully adapted and implemented," said Environment Minister Höfken during the event "Klimaschutz in der Großregion voranbringen" organised by the Environment Ministry at the Rhineland-Palatinate State Representation in Brussels. As examples of important regulatory framework conditions for climate protection, she cited socially acceptable and effective CO2 pricing - as uniformly as possible throughout Europe - as well as the exemption from the tendering obligation for wind energy projects up to 18 megawatts and the exemption from the EEG levy on new and existing climate-friendly own and direct power generation plants at federal level.

The Region has already set out on its way with cross-border cooperation, including the GREATER GREEN environmental cluster, which has been developing new technological solutions and innovative products for climate and resource protection for three years with the participation of its Rhineland-Palatinate partner Ecoliance. "With our partners in the Region - the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, the French region of Grand-Est, the Belgian region of Wallonia and the Saarland - we are linked not only by a common history and a long tradition of cooperation. We are also united by a competence in the field of environmental technologies that is unique in Europe. Nowhere else in Europe you can find such a density of specialised companies, universities and research institutes", Höfken listed the advantages of the Region as a location and concluded: "We must use this knowledge because only together can we develop the economic potential and at the same time with innovative projects in Europe limit global warming to the 2 degree target and make climate neutrality possible by 2050 at the latest".

With a view to the federal level, Höfken called for the obstacles to energy system transformation to be finally removed. "The Conference of Environment Ministers in May of this year already decided that new and existing own power generation plants based on renewable energies as well as highly efficient natural gas CHP plants must be exempted from the EEG levy. This will strengthen decentralised energy system transformation and relieve the networks in equal measure. “

Following the welcoming address by Minister Höfken, State Secretary Thomas Griese discussed together with his Saarland counterpart Roland Krämer, Arndt Müller, Chairman of the Environmental Technology Network Ecoliance Rheinland-Pfalz e.V., Tamara Breitbach of Ecoliance Rheinland-Pfalz and the Deputy Director General of the Directorate General Energy of the European Commission, Klaus-Dieter Borchardt, the necessary European framework conditions for climate protection and energy system transformation as well as the special possibilities of cross-border cooperation in the Region.