Article – Notes on… Germany’s federal election

Pick and mix

Germany’s political parties are vying to see what aspects of their various energy policies they can squeeze into a coalition package

On 24 September, when Germans went to the polls to choose the 19th Bundestag, they probably didn’t imagine how decisive their vote might be for the future of their country’s energy mix. According to opinion polls, Germans overwhelmingly support the current  Energiewende(literally meaning energy transition) away from nuclear power and towards renewables, but the topic was barely discussed during the campaign. However, as Angela Merkel’s centre-right Christian Democratic Union/ Christian Social Union won with the lowest support it’s received since 1949, her only option to secure a majority was to begin negotiating a coalition deal with the liberal Free Democratic Party and the Greens. Needless to say, the three parties don’t share a common vision of Germany’s energy future. If they reach a deal it will shape the country’s energy policy for at least the next five years and possibly until the middle of the century.

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