Journalist Michael Miersch at blogsite Die Achse des Guten reports on remarks made by Germany’s recently sworn-in President Joachim Gauck at Schloss Bellevue on Tuesday in a speech to open the Week of the Environment, where the elite of Germany’s environmental protection are meeting for two days.
German President Gauck bringing Germany back to eco-sobriety? (Photo by J. Patrick Fischer)
The eco pow-wow includes Daimler, Deutsche Bank, Lufthansa and 197 other ecological companies who have pitched tents at the Schlossgarten to show how to rescue the planet.
According to the German Press Agency (dpa), President Gauck warned against forcing an energy supply transition through central planning measures:
‘We are not going to succeed with central planning regulations, and absolutely not with excessive subsidies,’ said Gauck .”
Moreover Gauck gave two thumbs up to free markets and competition, adding:
There’s no better way to solve problems than having a society with open markets and free competition.”
Miersch also adds Gauck delivered one of the most sensible speeches he has heard from a politician so far:
No apocalyptic scenarios, no tacky ecology prose, but a few sentences that got stuck in the throats of the audience. There was also a call to approach questions regarding the environment and climate reasonably and factually.”
Gauck also made another statement that surely irritated some in the audience:
Sustainability does not mean restriction or going without. Rather it means reason and responsibility.“
Gauck, who spent a large part of his life under the boot of Soviet/East German tyranny, ended with a call for “sustainable progress“. Surely he knows something about what that means, having seen little of that in the communist days.
Overall, a detectable shift in tone is taking place; alarmism is being ratcheted back. Gauck did not not cite a consensus of scientists. This year his speech mentioned only “leading scientists warn of a consequential global climate warming that can hardly be stopped.“
This is indeed a toning down compared to last year’s speech by then-President Christian Wulff who claimed that “THE climate scientists“ and even “THE climate research“ left “no doubt“ of an imminent huge warming.
Now its only ‘leading climate scientists’ who are ‘warning”. A diplomatic retreat from an all-party dogma.”