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Keeping you in-the-know on environmental, social and governance developments

As an unabashed auto enthusiast, I have a soft spot for European cars. I don’t own one – primarily because they are beyond my budget. The German government is finding that the even higher cost of German EVs is a growing threat to achieving the country’s transportation electrification goal. Clean Energy Wire reported:

“The German government is aiming for 15 million electric cars on roads by 2030, but industry insiders say orders for EVs have dropped since the end of 2022, business daily Handelsblatt reported. ‘With the current status quo, 15 million e-cars by 2030 will not be possible,’ said Kurt Sigl, head of the German Electric Mobility Federation (BEM). ‘German manufacturers have no affordable cars that customers want.’ Subsidies for electric vehicle production have also been severely cut this year, impacting producer’s margins and their willingness to move away from combustion engine vehicles. Additionally, high interest rates on loans make leasing and financing obstacles for many people.”

This is an example of the delicate balance between national environmental and economic policy, corporate strategy, product pricing, worker pay and consumer sentiment that is necessary for a successfully managing climate risks/opportunities. And keep in mind – slower uptake of EVs in Germany may impact assumptions embedded in corporate goals/targets or even contractual requirements – even for US-based companies. Kermit the Frog certainly said it best: “It ain’t easy being green.”

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The Editor

Lawrence Heim has been practicing in the field of ESG management for almost 40 years. He began his career as a legal assistant in the Environmental Practice of Vinson & Elkins working for a partner who is nationally recognized and an adjunct professor of environmental law at the University of Texas Law School. He moved into technical environmental consulting with ENSR Consulting & Engineering at the height of environmental regulatory development, working across a range of disciplines. He was one… View Profile