BERLIN -- Economists, scientists and environmental campaigners called Tuesday for the German government to create a 100 billion-euro ($100-billion) fund for tackling climate change.
Marcel Fratzscher, the president of the German Institute for Economic Research, said the money is needed partly because of Germany's failure to invest enough in solar and wind power. Adequate funding would have made the country less dependent on fossil fuel imports that are now contributing to energy poverty, Fratzscher said.
“These mistakes need to be corrected now,” he told reporters in Berlin.
Additional tax revenue that the German government is receiving because of rampant inflation could go toward the fund, which would echo a similar financial vehicle the government recently created to boost the military. Treasury coffers already were up 29 billion euros in the first half of the year, he said.
The Fridays for Future youth movement, which is helping to coordinate a global climate protest planned for next week, supported the proposal.
One of its spokespeople, Luisa Neubauer, said Germany should take its cue from a bill recently passed in the United States that envisions $375 billion in federal investments to fight climate change over the decade.
Volker Quaschning, a prominent climate scientist at Berlin's University of Applied Sciences for Engineering and Economics, said the 100 billion euros were only a fraction of the total sum required to transform Germany into a low-carbon economy and make the country resilient to the impacts of global warming.
Part of the money would also go toward helping developing countries. Quaschning said events such as the recent floods in Pakistan showed that far larger amounts would be needed in the coming years if Germany wants to shoulder its share of responsibility for climate change.
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