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#EP2019: Interview with Lukas Kiefer, Member of Klimadelegation

Lukas stud­ies renew­able ener­gies in Cologne and has been a mem­ber of the Kli­madel­e­ga­tion since 2018. He wants to com­bine the tech­ni­cal back­ground of his stud­ies with pol­i­tics and pass this knowl­edge on to others.

Where does your inter­est in pol­i­cy, pol­i­tics and espe­cial­ly the elec­tions to the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment come from? What is your main moti­va­tion to engage yourself?

My inter­est in pol­i­tics start­ed very ear­ly. My fam­i­ly has always been polit­i­cal­ly active, we went to demon­stra­tions and had many dis­cus­sions. This is how I start­ed build­ing my own polit­i­cal opin­ion ear­ly on.

Since I con­sid­er myself a Euro­pean Cit­i­zen, I am espe­cial­ly inter­est­ed in the upcom­ing Euro­pean elec­tions. Deci­sions made in the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment affect so many more peo­ple than deci­sions do just with­in our own country. 

Cli­mate Change is a glob­al top­ic that needs to be faced inter­na­tion­al­ly. Change with­in a few coun­tries will not be enough. This is why I think we need to start act­ing as the Euro­pean Union. 

I want to con­tribute to the change I want to see in the world. This is why I became part of the Kli­madel­e­ga­tion.

What are your con­crete sug­ges­tions regard­ing cli­mate change pol­i­cy at EU lev­el towards can­di­dates to the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment? What would a can­di­date need to promise you to make you vote for their party?

  •         Reduce the emis­sions of the ener­gy sector.
  •         Tax the dif­fer­ent sec­tors, espe­cial­ly the mobil­i­ty sec­tor, in a way that they must pay for their emissions.
  •         Reduce the amount of sin­gle use plastic.
  •         Reduce the con­sump­tion of meat and all oth­er dairy products.

I know this list sounds harsh, but there is not just one ele­ment of the cli­mate cri­sis. It is a num­ber of things, that con­tribute togeth­er to our plan­et suf­fer­ing. Many things must be changed in a short peri­od of time. Oth­er­wise we will destroy our basis of liv­ing. Pol­i­tics needs to be made for the plan­et — not the econ­o­my. If only there was a par­ty hav­ing this as their main goal, I would go vote for them immediately!

What are the “hot” top­ics regard­ing cli­mate change in your coun­try? How do they poten­tial­ly affect the upcom­ing Elec­tions?

I think there are a few hot top­ics in Ger­many. But it is very hard to rate them. I would say that the reduc­tion of fos­sil ener­gy is the biggest top­ic at the moment. With the move­ment around the “Ham­bach­er Forst” and Fri­days for Future this top­ic has become present in the minds of many peo­ple. I think that it will affect the out­come of the Euro­pean elec­tion. I think and hope that many peo­ple real­ize that ener­gy out of fos­sil fuels can’t be the future and will destroy our planet.

Maybe the lit­er­al­ly “hot” sum­mer last year will affect the elec­tion, too. Every­one heard many things about cli­mate change but last sum­mer peo­ple could actu­al­ly feel the effects of a chang­ing climate.

I think that these two top­ics will affect the elec­tion most. But in the next years there will be more top­ics which will affect the next elec­tions. Mobil­i­ty and con­sump­tion in gen­er­al will be high­er up on the agen­da and I think that there will be a real change when we all real­ize what we are doing to this world. Hope­ful­ly it won’t be too late.

What should young peo­ple keep in mind while mak­ing their deci­sion in the elec­tion to the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment? What could they do if they do not yet have the right to vote themselves?

It is our future! We are the gen­er­a­tion that will suf­fer the most from deci­sions being made today. Espe­cial­ly on top­ics affect­ing cli­mate change. If the world won’t change their way of think­ing now, we will have a lot of prob­lems in the future. So, giv­ing a vote is an easy way to change some­thing. But even if you are not allowed to vote, which is stu­pid in my opin­ion, you are able to change the out­come of the elec­tion in a pos­i­tive way. You can con­vince your par­ents, grand­par­ents or old­er friends to vote in a way that helps our future! Change the Euro­pean elec­tions to cli­mate elec­tions. Every­thing is possible..

In your opin­ion, is giv­ing a vote enough?

Giv­ing your vote is essen­tial for democ­ra­cy, even though its effect does­n’t seem as rel­e­vant. All our votes togeth­er will make a dif­fer­ence. After the elec­tions politi­cian are oblig­at­ed to full­fill the promis­es they made. Soci­ety and press need to look after this. There are many projects and move­ments which are hap­py about every help­ing hand. They organ­ise great events and demon­stra­tions to show that we all need to do more than just talk­ing. It is one big step to change your own lifestyle to a more sus­tain­able one. It feels good, trust me!

Thank you for the interview!

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