Environmental relapse is a global issue that has for years affected the air we breathe, the water we drink and the food we eat. Different countries have made moves to try to improve and prevent further damage to the environment, some of these efforts taking the form of global initiatives and agreements across several countries. The world has therefore reached a consensus on how to evaluate and rank countries based on 25 different indicators of “Green” Environment using a pollution index. Since many years ago, the German state has embarked on formulating and improving environmental protection rules and laws. German efforts towards “Mother Earth” have been praised by the United Nations as pioneering sustainable development and global transformation We hereby, shed light on some of the German policies undertaken towards environmental protection.
Where does Germany stand?
According to several environmental pollution rankings, German settles a place in the 20 least polluted countries worldwide. This ranking is based on analyses of indicators of air and water quality, greenhouse emissions and pollutant emissions indices, and the effect that environment imposes on public health issues and pollution-related diseases, such as occupational diseases and lung cancer, for example. Apart from “preventing” climate damage, Germany also takes on positive actions towards clean energy sources by increasingly replacing fossil-based fuels and coal as energy sources to more environment-friendly energy sources like nuclear energy and renewable energy sources like solar energy.
Being a top priority of the German regime, the federal government is continuously revising and re-revising current measures of environment protection. Environmental protection is being enacted via the creation of several “Environment- watcher” agencies and schemes in Germany. The Federal Environment Agency is responsible for assessing how the country is progressing towards a clean environment by measuring pollution emission index, energy productivity through renewable energy sources and raw materials productivity and how all this affects the Gross Domestic Product of the country.
As a part of the energy transition strategy and the “Climate Action Programme 2020”, Germany is aspiring to shut down all nuclear power plants to be replaced by more clean energy sources. A very smart move towards this aim was enabling investors who run their plants and industries on renewable energy sources access to more compensation as compared to other investors who resort to more pollutant energy sources in their industries. Further discouragement to using pollutant-energy was imposing an eco-friendly tax slogan that enforced more taxes on those using such sources of power.
Top-rank transportation system in the Eurozone
With its resilient infrastructure and extensive public transport system, most of the residents live near a bus or train stop point. This has efficiently dropped down the use of cars. In addition, Germany has embraced the Eco-design Directive – initially issued by the EU – to regulate product designing in such a way to reduce power consumption of many electronics, electric cars are now getting privileges for licensing and parking spaces as an encouragement to increase their use. The country has also enriched its infrastructure with extensive long-distance bike-paths backed by bike-friendly traffic arrangements.
Clean-Air & Clean-Water: Made in Germany
Through a sound legal framework that enforces air quality control, Germany approached the airborne pollution with a belief that “clean air can be planned”. A stringent set of rules on industrial particulate waste and vapour emissions have been set based on academic expertise. According to official announcements, Berlin secures the first place among European countries across 9 different measures of promoting clean air.
On the other hand, water quality has been closely scrutinized and managed through an effective water management system and raising public awareness which results in abundant fresh water and ecological restoration of aquatic eco-systems. In turn, the water surfaces now account for 2.2% of the surface area.