04.09.2020, Berlin: Regine Günther (Bündnis 90/Die Grüne), Verkehrssenatorin von Berlin, nimmt an der offiziellen Eröffnung des autofreien Abschnitts der Friedrichsstraße teil. Wegen einer Demonstration am 29. August wurde die offizielle Eröffnung verschoben. Foto: Fabian Sommer/dpa +++ dpa-Bildfunk +++

Regine Günther is returning to her roots and meeting old acquaintances in her new position, from Rainer Baake to Jennifer Morgan, Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock’s climate officer. After her excursion as a transport senator into Berlin state politics, the 59-year-old will change to the Tagesspiegel information as of August 1 as the new director of the Climate Neutrality Foundation, which was founded in 2020 and develops cross-sector strategies for a CO2-neutral economy and life with other think tanks.

There she is to strengthen the international climate policy of the Berlin think tank alongside the founding director Baake, previously State Secretary in the Environment and Economics Ministries. Günther has been working in the field of national, European and international energy and climate policy for almost 30 years and has attended numerous UN climate summits.

From 1995 to 1998 she worked at the Berlin Energy Agency and from 1999 at the WWF Environmental Foundation, whose climate policy she shaped nationally and internationally. From 2016 to 2021 she was the Green Senator for the Environment, Transport and Climate Protection in the Senate of Governing Mayor Michael Müller (SPD). On her initiative, Berlin was the first federal state to recognize a climate emergency. But many projects, especially the expansion of local public transport, did not progress as planned.

Triggered by the bicycle referendum, the red-red-green coalition had also agreed on the first mobility law in Germany, but there were problems with the implementation in many places. During the corona pandemic, Berlin then became a pioneer in pop-up cycle paths. Many of the car lanes became cycle paths and, to Günther’s delight, some have remained so to this day. She also campaigned for more car-free zones.

Baake, your future co-director of the Climate Neutrality Foundation, emphasizes that he values ​​Günther as an excellent expert on energy and climate policy. “With its expertise, the Climate Neutrality Foundation is well prepared to devote itself to its new field of work, international climate policy.”

Günther emphasizes that the geopolitical upheavals would pose serious challenges for climate policy. It is intended to help promote the worldwide exchange of solutions and affordable concepts. This also fits with the idea of ​​Chancellor Olaf Scholz (SPD), who, after a decision at the G7 summit in Elmau, wants to implement his idea of ​​a climate club by the end of the year, in which pioneering states should organize themselves.