Mittelstandsverband: Federal Environment Agency has lost touch with the reality of life

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“Anyone who demands higher fuel prices, the abolition of the commuter allowance and a car toll in the same breath has lost all reference to the reality of life for hard-working people in our country. You cannot deprive millions of people of their mobility basis and only then start thinking about alternative offers . ” This is what the Federal Managing Director of the Federal Association of Small and Medium-Sized Enterprises, Markus Jerge, said about the measures proposed by the Federal Environment Agency to reduce CO₂ yesterday, Thursday.

The explosion in mobility costs promoted by the Federal Environment Agency hits commuters who have to get their jobs in rural regions just as hard as families who live on the outskirts of cities because they can no longer afford rents in the city centers. “The proposal to abolish the commuter allowance without replacement is tantamount to a frontal attack on medium-sized businesses and their employees,” said Jerger. “At the same time, the Federal Environment Agency is doing the acceptance of the energy and transport turnaround a disservice.” The future federal government would be well advised to work with the private sector to ensure a real restart in transport policy by expanding climate-neutral mobility offers.

The Federal Environment Agency has spoken out in favor of drastic measures so that the climate targets in the transport sector can be achieved. This includes a higher CO₂ price, which would mean rising prices for petrol and diesel fuels – in return, however, there should be compensation. The Federal Environment Agency is also proposing, for example, that the commuter allowance be abolished and that local transport with buses and trains be expanded significantly. Climate targets in transport cannot be achieved without massive efforts.

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The German Association of Cities asked the future coalition to invest billions in buses and trains for a “sustainable traffic turnaround”. Here, the coalition would have to agree on a real investment offensive, said City Council President Burkhard Jung the newspapers Funke media group (Issues dated Nov. 5). The federal government must contribute even more to the investment costs, but also to the operating costs for local transport. Specifically, Jung called for federal regionalization funds for buses and trains to be increased by a further 1.5 billion euros from the current annual figure of 9 billion euros. In addition, planning and approval processes would have to become faster.


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