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Sigmar Gabriel quotes
I am certain that the United States next year, under a new president - regardless whether it's Obama or McCain - will present an ambitious program promoting renewable energies and energy efficiency. Europe could quickly fall behind.
If we want to implement climate protection worldwide, countries like Germany, which are capable of developing new technologies, will have to hand over some of their knowledge. We can't expect to have our cake and eat it too.
What we have at present is a system of loss socialism. Whatever goes wrong is shouldered by the general public and anything that works is privatised. Worshippers of market freedom have suspended the most important economic principle: Risk and liability go hand in hand.
The production of natural resources in agriculture, forestry and fisheries, stable natural hydrological cycles, fertile soils, a balanced climate and numerous other vital ecosystem services can only be permanently secured through the protection and sustainable use of biological diversity.
Being told about the effects of climate change is an appeal to our reason and to our desire to bring about change. But to see that Africans are the hardest hit by climate change, even though they generate almost no greenhouse gas, is a glaring injustice, which also triggers anger and outrage over those who seek to ignore it.
Besides Germany, the only countries that don't have speed limits are places like Nepal, where road conditions are so bad that a limit would be beside the point. In other words, it's a little crazy that this is even a topic for debate in Germany.
But, as environment minister, I am very interested in a thriving German automobile industry, because I can only pay for the rising costs of environmental protection at home and abroad if there are people in Germany with jobs and who pay taxes.
Finding the right form of debate regarding Israeli policies will remain a challenge in Germany. Even with every conceivable and warranted criticism, the danger always arises that it will be exploited by those who consciously or unconsciously present anti-Semitism in a new guise.
However, I have a low opinion of people with narrow political horizons. Someone who talks about the environment and knows nothing about economics can make as many mistakes as someone who does the opposite.
In Germany it is good if as many people as possible join initiatives and peaceful demonstrations against the rule of the financial markets. Worshipping the unfettered freedom of global markets has brought the world to the brink of ruin. We now need social and ecological rules for the market economy.
My office has a view of low-cost housing, old East German prefabricated apartment buildings. It isn't an attractive view, but it's very helpful, because it reminds me to ask myself, whenever there is a decision to be made, whether the people who live there can afford our decisions.