Core messages and CVs

Briefing in the run-up to COP23

In Berlin, political and scientific experts informed about the upcoming COP taking place in Bonn. In the following you find the core messages and short CVs of the speakers.

Briefing zur COP 23 © DKK, S. Röhl

Core messages of the lectures

Prof. Gernot Klepper, IfW and DKK

The Paris Agreement as an opportunity for a climate-friendly future

  • Since all national actions to protect the climate are taken on a voluntary basis, it is crucial for the international community to be informed about how much individual countries are doing to meet the Paris targets. The greatest possible degree of transparency will also generate public moral pressure to adjust contributions to meet the goals set out in the Paris Agreement.

  • All countries should, in their own interest, take action to combat climate change, since it is becoming ever clearer that one significant cost of using fossil fuels is local environmental damage and adverse impacts on the health of the local population.

  • Nobody predicted how fast the cost of renewable energy would fall. Ten years ago, electricity from solar and wind power was still highly subsidised; today it is one of the cheapest forms of energy. Its cost will be reduced by a further 30 to 50 percent over the next few years.

  • Many firms worldwide have realised that the future does not lie in fossil fuels. The stock exchange value of the major coal and oil firms has decreased, in some cases dramatically, whilst pioneering renewable energy companies have been given high stock market valuations.

  • Nevertheless, many governments have responded to political pressure from the fossil fuel lobby which wants to preserve the current energy system for as long as possible. They are not thereby acting in the interests of a majority of their citizens and most definitely not in the interest of future generations. Governments should actively support the energy transition with a rigorous climate policy, thus giving shape to a climate-friendly future.

Daniel Schneider, German Trade Union Confederation

International trade union movement demands for COP23 in Bonn

  • Be more ambitious – harness climate change’s potential for job creation COP23 has to deliver with respect to concrete initiatives to reduce emissions even before 2020. Sound, democratic modalities have to be agreed on for the Facilitative Dialogue 2018, which is to form the basis for the five-yearly review cycle. Future review mechanisms must further define the goal of remaining well below a 2°C temperature rise on the basis of scientific findings on climate change, with democratic participation by all groups and respecting the principle of fairness. 

  • Make available climate finance and support for the most vulnerable countries. COP23 must provide certainty as to how the climate commitments can be reached. Sufficient financial resources must be made available to foster population resilience to the impacts of climate change, to support efforts to reduce emissions and to facilitate a fair transition to a zero-carbon economy. The present commitments to mobilise 100 billion US dollars per year until 2020 should serve as both a basis and stimulus for financing post-2020. Bereitstellung von Klimafinanzierungen und Unterstützung der am stärksten gefährdeten Länder

  • Campaign for a just transition for the workforce and their communities. The Paris Agreement took a first step towards promising that the transition would not impact unfairly on the workforce. COP23 must underpin this promise by calling on all stakeholders to incorporate elements of “Just Transition” in their NDCs and to recommend future work on this issue by the Subsidiary Body for Implementation (SBI) and the Subsidiary Body for Scientific and Technological Advice (STBA). This is imperative if we are to successfully address the challenges posed by industrial change in all sectors and in particular with respect to the jobs and livelihoods for those currently working in emission-intensive industries. National contributions and road maps for zero-carbon development are crucial if we want to build a long-term vision and formulate sound plans for the transformation of our economies and the promotion of sustainable investment in the medium and longer term.

Prof. Peter Höppe, Munich Re

Sustainable financial instruments to hedge for climate risks

  • The people in the poorest countries are those most affected by climate change. As a rule, they do not have access to insurance, and even if they did, few could afford adequate coverage

  • Intelligent and efficient insurance solutions, supported by those responsible for causing climate change, will increase the resilience of economies and societies in these countries.

Ingrid-Gabriela Hoven, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development

Forming alliances to strengthen the resilience of the poorest

  • The impacts of climate change pose an existential threat to the world's poorest already today. In order to change this, we not only need to base the global economy on renewable energy. It is equally vital to channel investment into adaptation measures such as drought-resistant crops, sustainable drainage systems and coastal protection. Where the threat of climate change nonetheless continues to rise, we need to find clever ways of managing residual risk, for example through climate risk insurance.

  • In order to speed up the development and scaling-up of sustainable solutions for increasing the resilience of the poorest, we need to join forces in powerful alliances with all relevant actors. Germany is leading by example on this, e.g. with the NDC Partnership and the InsuResilience Global Partnership.



Short CVs of the speakers

Volker Angres

[Translate to English:] Volker Angres © Angres

Volker Angres has been head of the environment desk at ZDF (a German public-service TV broadcaster) since 1990 and is currently deputy head of its economy, law, social affairs, service and environment desk. He is responsible for the weekly environmental documentary series, “planet e”. Prior to that, he coordinated and presented “ZDF.Umwelt”, the forerunner to “planet.e”. Furthermore, the environment desk regularly produces material for current ZDF programmes, with Volker Angres in charge of content. Angres trained as a banking clerk. He obtained a master’s degree in media studies, political science and education studies from Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz. He acquired wide-ranging experience as a reporter, editor and presenter, particularly in the field of economic affairs (“PlusMinus”; “Ratgeber Geld”), at ARD (SWR and BR), a German public-service TV broadcaster.
Volker Angres was a member of the National Committee for the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. He co-authored the books, “Futter fürs Volk” and “Bananen für Brüssel”, which were published by Droemer. He is actively involved with various foundations, including as a member of the management board of the German Consumer Foundation “STIFTUNG WARENTEST”.

Marie-Luise Beck

[Translate to English:] Marie-Luise Beck © DKK, S. Sharifi

Marie-Luise Beck has been Managing Director of the Deutsches Klima-Konsortium (DKK) – Germany’s scientific association for research on the climate and climate change – since 2012 and is responsible for its dialogue with policymakers and the public. She is also a board member of Zukunftsforum Öffentliche Sicherheit, an initiative on public security launched by Members of the German Bundestag. Prior to that, she was employed at Freie Universität Berlin, where she was responsible for communication between academics and policymakers at Forschungsforum Öffentliche Sicherheit (a research forum on public security), and worked as a research assistant to various Members of the German Bundestag. She graduated in biology, German language and literature and education studies from Philipps-Universität Marburg, where she obtained the first state examination.

Ernst Peter Fischer

[Translate to English:] Ernst Peter Fischer © AA

Ernst Peter Fischer is Director for Energy and Climate Policy and Export Controls at the Federal Foreign Office, where he has worked since 1986. His professional focus is on economic affairs and global issues. Prior to his current role, he held various positions in Germany and abroad, including in Washington DC, Tel Aviv, London, Shanghai, Singapore and the Office of the Federal President. Fischer studied history and political science. He obtained an M.A. from Freie Universität Berlin and an M.A. from Georgetown University. He also studied at Sciences Po in Paris.

Prof. Peter Höppe

[Translate to English:] Prof. Dr. Dr. Peter Höppe © Höppe

Prof. Peter Höppe has been head of Geo Risks Research at Munich Re since 2004. In 2008, Munich Re’s Corporate Climate Centre was added to his unit. Prior to that, he worked in various institutes at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich (Chair of Bioclimatology and Applied Meteorology, Institute for Occupational and Environmental Medicine) and as a post doc at Yale University. Peter Höppe did his undergraduate degree in meteorology and his PhD and post-doctoral dissertation in physics and human biology. His university research focused on the impact of atmospheric processes and air pollutants on people and on assessing environmental risks.
In 2007, he was appointed to the Bavarian state government’s Climate Council and became head of the Climate Change Financial Forum in the German Government’s High-Tech Strategy that is now part of VfU (an association for environmental management and sustainability in financial institutes). In 2005, he launched the Munich Climate Insurance Initiative (MCII) and has been its chair since then. Professor Höppe is also a co-initiator of the Desertec Industrial Initiative. He has been chair of the board of Münchener Universitätsgesellschaft (association of friends and sponsors of Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich) since 1 January 2014.

Ingrid-Gabriela Hoven

[Translate to English:] Ingrid-Gabriela Hoven © BMZ

Ingrid-Gabriela Hoven has been Director-General of Global Issues – Sector Policies and Programmes at the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development since mid-October 2014. Prior to that, she was in charge of the ministry’s special unit on climate. From 2010 to 2014, she represented the Federal Government in the World Bank Group for four years as the German Executive Director, where she played an instrumental role in incorporating climate and sustainability goals into the new World Bank strategy and into the ongoing reform process. As head of the Environment Division at the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, she prepared the German contribution for the Rio+10 World Summit on Sustainable Development in Johannesburg in 2002. During this period she also conducted negotiations in the area of climate funding and on issues concerning developing countries within the context of the United Nations Climate Change Conference. She studied economics and political sciences in Giessen and Paris. After comleting her degree in 1985, she undertook postgraduate studies at the German Development Institute/Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE) and started her career at the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development.

Dr Karl-Eugen Huthmacher

[Translate to English:] Dr. Karl-Eugen Huthmacher © BMBF

Dr Karl-Eugen Huthmacher has been Director-General of Provision for the Future – Basic and Sustainability Research at the Federal Ministry of Education and Research since April 2010. He studied law in Mainz and Saarbrücken until 1978, did his practical legal training in Saarland and studied at the German University of Administrative Sciences Speyer. After obtaining his second state law examination, he was awarded a doctorate in law by Saarland University in 1984. During the 1980s, Karl Eugen Huthmacher was Managing Director of the Europa-Institut at Saarland University, desk officer at the Bundesrat and Federal Chancellery, and spokesperson at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety. From 1990 to 1997, he was first head of division, then director at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety with responsibility for ecological modernisation and development in eastern Germany, cooperation with the Länder and municipalities, the environment and technology, the Deutsche Bundesstiftung Umwelt (German Federal Foundation for the Environment), and coordinating the supervision of the Federal Environment Agency. Huthmacher headed the Radiological Protection Directorate at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety until 2010.

Prof. Gernot Klepper Ph.D.

[Translate to English:] Prof. Gernot Klepper © IfW

Prof. Gernot Klepper Ph.D. is Deputy Chairman of the Board of the German Climate Consortium and was Head of the Environment and Natural Resources Research Team at Kiel Institute for the World Economy until the beginning of 2017. As an economist, he conducts research on climate change, climate policy, environmental policy instruments and sustainable development. His research is characterised by a focus on solutions, interdisciplinarity and the inclusion of stakeholders. In addition to his research projects in the fields of climate economics, bioenergy and land use, and economics of the sea, he holds various coordination positions. He is also spokesperson of the Kiel Earth Institute, chair of International Sustainability and Carbon Certification Association (the largest bioenergy certification system), and coordinator of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research’s stakeholder dialogue on climate economics. Furthermore, he was and still is a member of various scientific advisory boards.

Walter J. Lindner

[Translate to English:] Walter J. Lindner © AA

Walter J. Lindner has been State Secretary of the Federal Foreign Office since February 2017. After studying law in Munich and doing his practical legal training at Munich Higher Regional Court, he joined the diplomatic service in 1988, serving as attaché in the Legal Directorate-General at the Federal Foreign Office in Bonn and as press desk officer at the German Embassy in Ankara until 1992. From 1992 to 1995, Lindner was Deputy Head of Mission at the German Embassy in Managua (Nicaragua). After working in the Press Division at the Federal Foreign Office, he served as Counsellor at the Permanent Mission of the Federal Republic of Germany to the United Nations in New York from 1998 to 2001. From 2001 to 2002, he was Deputy Head of the Task Force for Human Rights at the Federal Foreign Office. Lindner was Federal Foreign Office Spokesperson from 2002 to 2006 and German Ambassador to Kenya from 2006 to 2009. He was Crisis Management Commissioner in the Federal Foreign Office from 2009 to 2010, before being appointed Director for Sub-Saharan Africa and the Sahel in November 2010, serving in this role until June 2012. From July 2012, he was German Ambassador to Venezuela. He was appointed Special Representative of the Federal Government for the Ebola Crisis on 1 October 2014. Lindner was German Ambassador to South Africa from July 2015 until early 2017 and then returned to Berlin. He is also a keen musician and music producer and has released several CDs.

Dr Karsten Sach

[Translate to English:] Dr. Karsten Sach © Sach

Dr Karsten Sach was born in 1959. He has been Director-General for Climate Policy, European and International Policy at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety since 2016. Prior to that, he headed the ministry’s European and International Policy Directorate for 12 years. Since 1999, he has been Germany’s chief negotiator at UNFCCC conferences of the parties. In 1998-1999, he served as Deputy Head of the Strategic Aspects of International Cooperation, Global Environmental Conventions and International Climate Protection Division at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety, subsequently heading this division until 2004. Prior to that, he served as environment attaché at the Permanent Representation of the Federal Republic of Germany to the European Union in Brussels. Karsten Sach has been working at the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety since 1991. He began his career there in the International Freshwater Protection Law and Protection of the Marine Environment Division. He was Chair of the Management Board of the European Environment Agency from 2008 to 2014. Before joining the Federal Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation, Building and Nuclear Safety, he taught environmental studies and law. He studied law in Kiel and Freiburg.  Karsten Sach was born in Land Schleswig-Holstein, is married and lives near Berlin.

Daniel Schneider

[Translate to English:] Daniel Schneider © Schneider

Daniel Schneider holds degrees in law and environmental engineering. After studying law, he worked as a solicitor in labour and administrative law while studying for a degree in environmental engineering. He has been working as an environmental and climate policy officer at the German Trade Union Confederation since January 2013.





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