Reducing Greenhouse Gases Will Cost Germany €1.4 Trillion

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The legacy of the past weighs heavy on the future. Picture source: Reuters

Germans have long agreed on the laudatory goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions, but until now the exact cost for this massive environmental cleanup was never really spelled out. A new study released Thursday puts the total tab at a staggering €1.4 trillion ($1.66 trillion) to meet the goal of cutting emissions by 80-95 percent by 2050.

The estimate, produced by the Boston Consulting Group and the Prognos Institute for the German Federation of Industry, says implementing the plan will hit households for €400 billion. Several key sectors of the economy will also pay a heavy price.  The transport sector alone will have to invest €450 billion to reduce pollution with things like electric vehicles, while the energy sector will have to spend €370 billion to upgrade power plants and German industry will have to foot a €160 billion bill.

Among the costs: building a nationwide system of charging stations for electric cars and adding insulation to private homes to reduce heating costs. Several major companies supported the study, including chemicals maker BASF, oil giant BP, industrial conglomerate ThyssenKrupp and the utility RWE.

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