Environmental aid sued BMW and Mercedes-Benz

Released on 21.09. 2021

  • BMW rejects the alleged claim of environmental aid and refers to the legislature. Photo: Christophe Gateau

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The German Environmental Aid has made a name for itself with a wave of lawsuits for diesel driving bans in cities. Now the association is entering new legal territory and wants to force car companies to exit combustion engines. 2039

Munich / Stuttgart (dpa) – Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) wants BMW and Mercedes-Benz to legally ban the construction of gasoline and diesel cars. The association has sued the two car manufacturers in the regional courts of Munich and Stuttgart. Federal Managing Director Jürgen Resch said on Tuesday: “With their particularly climate-damaging vehicle fleets and many SUV city tanks, BMW and Mercedes-Benz are violating the“ fundamental right to climate protection ”. We will put an end to diesel and gasoline cars from 2026 through legal action. »

Car manufacturers refer to the legal situation

The association had demanded a cease and desist declaration from the companies with a deadline of Monday, which they rejected as expected. The Daimler subsidiary Mercedes-Benz announced that it would “defend itself with all legal means”. The vehicle fleet will 2039 be completely climate neutral – eleven years earlier than required by EU legislation. BMW announced that the CO2 emissions of its cars will not only be on the road, but also from raw materials to production and shutdown to 2030 reduced by 40 percent. The democratically legitimized parliaments decided on the way to achieve the climate goals.

Resch was optimistic that the courts would negotiate the lawsuits in the coming year. “For more than ten years they formed a criminal cartel together with VW, which has agreed to increase profits through the use of inferior exhaust gas cleaning technology that is harmful to the environment and which has also violated the EU’s CO2 limit values,” said the DUH Federal Managing Director. With the lawsuits, he will force them to reduce their CO2 emissions in accordance with the rules of the Paris Climate Protection Agreement and German laws.

Energy group in the focus of environmental aid

Another lawsuit against the energy group Wintershall Dea is still in preparation, but will soon be brought to the Kassel regional court. According to DUH’s request, Wintershall Dea is to be sentenced not to develop any more oil or gas fields from 2026.

DUH lawyer Remo Klinger referred to the Federal Constitutional Court’s climate share from spring. The judges had called for more ambitious climate protection. Klinger said there was “a basic right to climate protection” that not only obliges the state, but also corporations “that are responsible for emitting more CO2 than entire industrialized countries. We are now demanding this in court. ”

Greenpeace had sent VW a similar request for an injunction at the beginning of September. VW therefore has until the end of October to submit the required declaration.

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