Outgoing German Federal Minister for Development Cooperation (BMZ) Dr. Gerd Müller Calls for Greater Cooperation Between India & Germany to Address Climate Change and Energy Transition

“Without India, we cannot address climate change at a global scale” (paraphrased Handelsblatt article 3 December 2021; Hindustan Times article 8 December 2021)

The Newspapers Handelsblatt and Hindustan Times published an article in the name of outgoing German Development Cooperation Minister Dr. Gerd Müller, in which he calls for greater cooperation between India and Germany in transforming the energy sector to address global climate change challenges. Dr. Müller highlights the significance of India as a pivotal partner in addressing climate change and achieving sustainable development. Without sufficient energy, this is not possible. However, the current expansion of India’s fossil energy sector, specifically coal, to feed this demand puts climate change targets of the Paris agreement at risk. While Germany and India are together responsible for almost 9% of global CO2 emissions, both countries have not yet realised the full potential of renewable energy to achieve substantial reductions in emissions. At COP26, PM Modi raised the ambition for an energy transition in India by announcing to increase renewable energy capacity (500 GW) while the carbon intensity of the economy shall be reduced by 45% until 2030. This shift away from coal must be implemented swiftly if 50% of India’s power is to come from renewable energy by 2030 while guaranteeing universal access to energy. Germany aims to phase out coal latest until 2038. Developed countries such as Germany have a special responsibility to lead the way towards a just energy transition and provide support to partner countries doing the same. At recently held government negotiations, Germany intensified the cooperation with India to fight climate change and foster sustainable development by committing over 1.3 billion EUR. The investments will go into the further roll-out of renewable energy, the development of green corridors and the financing of green mobility solutions. The Indo-German cooperation also opens up new markets and increases private sector engagement in climate and development-related sectors as the recent activities of India’s Reliance New Energy Solar and German Enercon and Bosch Ltd. illustrate. In conclusion, Minister Müller says that India and Germany are strong partners at a global scale. The German 2022 G7-Presidency as well India’s 2022 G20-Presidency could be utilised to intensify this cooperation further and motivate other partners worldwide to also embrace a green energy pathway.