Germany’s planned 2038 coal phase out could be delayed beyond its deadline if energy security issues arise, according to a senior legislator in Angela Merkel’s CDU.
Last Saturday a commission proposed the phase out with the goal of mapping out Germany’s transition to a more environmentally friendly low carbon economy, which attracted criticism from people across industry who expressed concerns over the impact of higher energy bills.
Ralph Brinkhaus, chair of the conservative benches in parliament, highlighted the importance of not being “dogmatic” in the country’s pursuit of its goal, in a speech aimed at the right of the Christian Democratic Union.
“Energy supply security must be guaranteed,” he told Welt am Sonntag newspaper. “If it is endangered, we should be free to do another round and address that, without abandoning the path we’ve chosen. There’s no reason to be dogmatic about this.”
Brinkhaus defeated a Merkel ally in the race for the influential parliamentary leader position, which subsequently led to the sequence of events that resulted in Merkel resigning her position as party leader and announcing this would be her last term as chancellor.
The conflict has reinforced tension within the party caused by Merkel’s relations to the Greens and leftists, which have often seemed closer than those in her own party.
A recent INSA poll for Bild newspaper found the CDU remained the most popular political party in Germany on 30%, although a disappointing election year could reignite the internal party conflict.