Life is becoming more expensive, there is a risk of energy shortages, the pandemic is not over – and climate change is certainly not over. Chancellor Scholz wants to address current crises at the summit in Elmau.
Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) wants to work with partners in the G7 countries to find solutions to the energy crisis and rising inflation.
“Many things that we buy have become more expensive. Food, but especially the prices for energy. We notice that at the gas station, we notice that when we have to pay the heating bill. Heating oil, gas are all much more expensive than they were a year ago. That’s why we have to prepare for it,” said Scholz in his video message “Kanzler compact” published on Saturday.
Germany must agree with others what needs to be done. “Because we will only be able to overcome the challenges this new situation presents for all of us together. Politically, we want to discuss all of this internationally,” said Scholz, who referred to the meeting of the G7 countries in Elmau, Bavaria, on Sunday.
“This discussion club started as a G6 with six countries, when Helmut Schmidt called everyone together to talk about how we were going to deal with the oil crisis at the time,” said Scholz. Now it is about the current crisis and about stopping man-made climate change by turning away from the use of fossil fuels. One task is to set up a “climate club” in which the countries that want to achieve this work together.
Scholz meets Biden
The G7 summit of democratic economic powers begins on Sunday with discussions on the global economic situation, the fight against climate change and security policy.
The three-day meeting chaired by Federal Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD) at Schloss Elmau in the Bavarian Alps will focus on the Ukraine war and its consequences. Before the first working session, Scholz will meet with US President Joe Biden, who is visiting Germany for the first time since taking office in early 2021.
Scholz is the host for the first time
In addition to Germany and the USA, the G7 also includes France, Great Britain, Italy, Canada and Japan. In addition to the heads of state and government of these countries, EU Council President Charles Michel and EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen are also taking part in the summit. Scholz has also invited five guest countries: Indonesia, India, South Africa, Senegal and Argentina.
Scholz is hosting a major international summit for the first time. The “Group of Seven” does not make any binding decisions, but it is still considered an important forum for coordination between the most powerful Western countries. The summit will end on Tuesday with a final declaration.
Scientists call for more money for climate protection
Shortly before the start of the summit, scientists called for more money from the participating states for climate protection. More money is needed than the 100 billion US dollars that industrialized countries have promised to countries particularly affected by global warming, said Axel Berger from the German Institute for Development and Sustainability in Garmisch-Partenkirchen.
The “climate club” proposed by Scholz must also deal with the problems of developing countries and, for example, advance energy transition partnerships, Berger demanded. Macroeconomist Dennis Snower, president of the Global Solutions Initiative, a network of think tanks, said that social issues must also be addressed.
Multilateralism, i.e. the cooperation of states in international bodies and organizations, is under pressure, said Snower. Nevertheless, it remains important for solving problems that need to be addressed on a global level. Russia and its supporters could not be completely excluded from all forums.
Snower and Berger spoke at a press conference of the think tank network “Think7”, which accompanies the German G7 presidency with scientific expertise. The group also recommends new ways to measure wealth more comprehensively than just gross domestic product. Environmental, educational and social policy issues should also be covered. Digital companies also need a uniform legal framework that gives users back control over their data.