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Flooding Adds to Germans’ Disillusion With ‘Climate Chancellor’

July 23, 2021, 4:00 AM

Angela Merkel’s slow-motion departure from the German political stage took an ironic turn in April as the chancellor tripped over a climate law she herself had drawn up. In a shock decision, judges on the country’s highest court ruled that Merkel’s faltering attempts to rewire the energy system away from fossil fuels would saddle future generations with the burden of cutting emissions. Merkel—once hailed as a climate leader, now denounced as a straggler—was ordered to speed things up.

Merkel’s cautious approach threatened the fundamental rights of young people “to a human future,” the judges said, ruling in favor of ...