Germany’s preoccupation with environment sustainability issues – in forestry, to
name just one example – stretches back more than 300 years. The country is a
world leader when it comes to addressing important questions about our future
with regard to climate, energy and the environment.
Since the mid-20th century, energy and environmental policy in Germany has
been characterised by diverse – even fundamental – changes in direction and
shifts in emphasis. Post-war reconstruction with a focus on security of supply
was followed by an emphasis on coal and nuclear power in the 1960s.
The 1990s brought a restructuring of the former East Germany and the liberalisation
of gas and electricity markets (a trend reflected across Europe).