Coalition agreement: Relevant contents from the perspective of landscape architecture

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The coalition agreement 2021 of the SPD, the Greens and the FDP addresses topics relevant to landscape architecture in many places. Here we have compiled the relevant passages for you in the wording.

Read also the analysis of the coalition agreement made by the bdla from the perspective of landscape architecture: Transformation goals of the traffic light coalition positively assessed.

Relevant contents of the coalition agreement in the wording:

Planning and permitting acceleration (lines 286-386).

In order to modernize Germany quickly, fast administrative, planning, and approval procedures are key requirements. For this reason, all necessary decisions are to be made and enforced in the first year of government so that both private and state investments can be implemented quickly, efficiently and unerringly. Our goal is to at least halve the length of procedures. To achieve this, the state and society as well as the federal, state and local governments must pull together. We want to establish a planning culture in Germany based on legal certainty and mutual trust. All government agencies should simplify and improve administrative procedures in such a way that legal disputes are avoided wherever possible. We will exploit more possibilities within the framework of constitutional and Union law.

We will increase the personnel and technical capacities of authorities and courts. For a personnel and further training offensive as well as digitization at all levels, we will strive for a reliable and sustainable pact for planning, approval and implementation acceleration with the federal states. The in-house consulting capacities of the public sector will be expanded into acceleration agencies that can also be easily accessed by the states and municipalities. The deployment options for private project managers will be expanded. For matters of planning law, we are creating the conditions for additional senates at the Federal Administrative Court. The federal government is strengthening its expertise in supporting dialog-based citizen participation processes.

We will prioritize the digitization of planning and approval processes. We will equip authorities with the necessary technology, standardize IT interfaces between the federal and state governments, and expand the digital portal for environmental data into a publicly usable central archive for mapping and species data. Data that has already been collected should be made usable for as long as possible, if necessary through plausibility checks. Building information modeling will make planning processes more efficient, cost-effective and transparent. We will seamlessly continue the digital options offered by the Planning Security Act and further develop them, particularly with regard to citizen participation.

To speed up administrative procedures, we will introduce the earliest possible and most intensive public participation. This will be combined with a duty of participation for the recognized nature conservation associations and for the public concerned. We want to introduce an effective form of material preclusion that is permissible under European Union law. We will introduce early procedural conferences in the authorities.

We will provide for the earliest possible cut-off dates for the applicable substantive and legal situation. We want to clarify that repeated interpretation, objection and response loops can be avoided by only involving newly affected parties in the case of plan amendments after public participation and only permitting objections to plan amendments. We will extend internal administrative deadlines and fictitious approval when additional authorities are involved.

In the case of particularly priority projects, the federal government should in future provide for short deadlines for issuing the zoning decision, following the example of the Federal Immission Control Act.

We also want to accelerate the launch of major and particularly important infrastructure measures by means of permissible legal planning that complies with EU law and to implement them with high political priority. We define such infrastructure measures as system-relevant rail lines, power lines and engineering structures (e.g. critical bridges). For the design, we will coordinate closely with the European Commission, carry out the necessary environmental assessment and ensure legal protection and the effectiveness of environmental law through access to the Federal Administrative Court. In suitable cases, the federal government could also take over the regional planning procedure. We will start with rail projects from the Deutschlandtakt - the expansion/new construction of the Hamm-Hannover-Berlin rail lines, the Middle Rhine corridor, Hanau-Würzburg/Fulda-Erfurt, Munich-Kiefersfelden-Grenze D/A, Karlsruhe-Basel, "Optimized Alpha E ", Eastern Corridor South, Nuremberg-Reichenbach/Grenze D-CZ, the Hamburg, Frankfurt, Cologne, Mannheim and Munich nodes - as well as high-voltage direct-current transmission lines SüdLink, SüdOstLink and Ultranet, which are central to the energy turnaround. Further projects will be added.

We will enable closer dovetailing of regional planning and planning approval procedures to avoid duplicate reviews. We want to make greater use of the instrument of planning approval within the European legal framework, in particular for maintenance, rehabilitation, renewal, replacement and supplementary measures in the immediate spatial context of existing infrastructures. We aim to transfer special rules for individual areas of specialist planning to general administrative procedural law, where this is possible and makes sense. We want to strengthen the preservation of plans by expanding the planning preservation standards and target deviation procedures.

We will accelerate administrative court proceedings by means of an "early first hearing" and a more efficient interim legal protection procedure, which will take significant account of error cures and focus on the reversibility of measures. Plaintiffs whose legal remedies contribute to the correction of errors will be able to terminate proceedings without disadvantage.

We want to increase legal certainty in species protection law through nationwide legal standardization (especially significance thresholds) without lowering the overall level of protection.

For our common mission to drastically accelerate the planning of infrastructure projects, especially the expansion of renewable energies, we want to clarify the relationship between climate protection and species protection. In order to achieve climate targets, the construction of facilities for generating or transporting electricity from renewables and the expansion of electrified rail lines are in the public interest and serve public safety. We will enshrine this in law and, under certain conditions, create a regulatory presumption for such projects that the exemption requirements of the Federal Nature Conservation Act are met. We will advocate a stronger focus on population protection, clarification of the relationship between species protection and climate protection, and more standardization and legal certainty, including in Union law.

Where possible, we want to combine similar assessments in the context of a licensing procedure in an integrated assessment without lowering the level of protection. We want to ensure, if necessary by means of opening clauses, that cooperation between municipalities and the Länder succeeds in securing the supply of renewable energies.

These measures will be accompanied by project-related and overall balancing compensatory measures that ensure a high level of environmental and nature protection.

To ensure rapid and high-quality implementation of our acceleration projects, we will establish an interdepartmental steering group with the involvement of the states.

Tourism (lines 899-908)

Domestic tourism is an important economic factor with great potential for the future, especially in rural areas. We are resuming the process on the national tourism strategy, improving the coordination of tourism policy in order to make Germany a sustainable, climate-friendly, socially just and innovative tourism location after the Corona crisis. We are providing unbureaucratic support for new and re-established businesses with a "Future Tourism" modernization program. National Natural Landscapes, UNESCO World Heritage Sites and UNESCO Global Geoparks are important components of German tourism. For sustainable, nature-compatible tourism, we support increased expansion of the appropriate infrastructure, especially for hiking, biking and water tourism. [...]

Public procurement law (lines 1040-1053)

We want to simplify, professionalize, digitize, and expedite public procurement procedures. The German government will align public procurement and awarding economically, socially, ecologically and innovatively and strengthen bindingness without jeopardizing the legal certainty of award decisions or raising access barriers for small and medium-sized enterprises. We will specify the existing requirements in accordance with European public procurement law in national public procurement law. The public sector is to participate in the development of a system for calculating climate and environmental costs.

We want to drive forward legally compliant digitization in this area and, to this end, create a user-friendly central platform via which all public awards can be accessed and which enables companies to be prequalified. We want to promote fast decisions in public procurement procedures and, in doing so, support states and municipalities in simplification, digitization and sustainability.

Commodities, supply chains, and free trade (line 1055-1064).

We want to help our economy secure a sustainable supply of raw materials, make domestic resource extraction easier, and make it more ecological.

We want to modernize federal mining law.

We want to make full use of the economic and ecological potential of recycling, reduce resource consumption and thus create jobs (product design, recyclate, recycle). [...]

Conservation and Biodiversity (lines 1152-1206).

Preserving biodiversity is a human task and an ethical obligation. We want to protect and improve biodiversity, ensure its sustainable use and exploit the potential of natural climate protection. To this end, we are making an ambitious contribution at the international level, strengthening nature conservation and seeing cooperation with land users as a central building block. We will take and finance the necessary measures. [...]

Within the framework of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), we are working in the spirit of the European biodiversity strategy to achieve 30 percent protected areas and to protect them effectively. For national implementation, we will further develop the National Biodiversity Strategy (NBS) with action plans, concrete targets and measures, anchor it in binding form and strengthen scientific monitoring.

We support the designation of the European Green Belt and take into account the culture of remembrance and the injustices committed by the SED. We are establishing an action plan for protected areas with the aim of improving their management. Federally owned land in external areas is of considerable importance for climate protection, both as potential sites for wind power and PV plants and for biodiversity - such as biotope networks, national natural heritage, wilderness areas, water protection and species conservation - and can support development in rural areas and be made available for sustainable use. Areas suitable for this purpose will be exempted from privatization in the future and transferred to the Bundesanstalt für Immobilienaufgaben (Federal Agency for Real Estate Tasks) if they are not already in its ownership. The Federal Agency will lease this land and land from its own portfolio on a permanent basis for the purpose in question. The BVVG areas that are prepared and listed for transfer to the National Natural Heritage at the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation will be transferred quickly and developed in such a way that they increase their function as CO2 sinks.

We are implementing European nature conservation law on a one-to-one basis. For the implementation of nature conservation measures above statutory minimum standards, we are significantly strengthening contract-based nature conservation and allowing regional leeway as well as flexible solutions such as the Dutch way. We will strengthen nature conservation in the Joint Task for Agricultural Structures and Coastal Protection (GAK) and also increase funding for the contract-based nature conservation programs of the federal states.

We will push ahead with the energy transition without dismantling ecological protection standards. We will set up a national species assistance program that will improve the protection of those species in particular where there are conflicts with the expansion of renewable energies, in order to make the energy turnaround compatible with nature and ensure financing with the participation of operators.

We are committed to consistent insect protection, will significantly reduce the use of pesticides and promote the development of nature- and environment-friendly alternatives. [...]

Natural climate change mitigation (lines 1208-1248).

We are developing a Natural Climate Action Program to create synergies between nature conservation and climate protection, and we are strengthening the resilience of our ecosystems, especially peatlands, forests, floodplains, grasslands, and marine and coastal ecosystems, against the climate crisis with renaturalization measures. We provide sufficient funding from the Energy and Climate Fund. In addition, we are establishing a federal nature conservation fund and bundling existing federal programs for nature conservation. Peatland protection is in the public interest. We will adopt and swiftly implement a National Peatland Protection Strategy. We will accompany the implementation of peatland protection measures with a participatory process to draw up sustainable development concepts, develop perspectives for the regions and strengthen alternative forms of management (including paludiculture). We will develop alternatives to peat use and adopt a phase-out plan for peat extraction and use.

We will protect the existing natural heritage on the Oder and Middle Elbe rivers. We will strengthen the competencies of the Federal Waterways and Shipping Administration (WSV) for climate protection and climate adaptation. [...]

It is in the forest that the consequences of the climate crisis become visible. At the same time, it is essential for achieving our climate protection goals. Species-rich and climate-resilient forests with predominantly native tree species must be created through targeted forest conversion. Forest management plays an important role in this. In accordance with these goals, we are amending the Forest Act. [...] We stop logging in old, near-natural beech forests in public ownership. [...] We support regional timber value chains with a timber construction initiative. [...]

Climate Adaptation (lines 1272-1291)

We are developing a precautionary climate adaptation strategy, especially against the backdrop of the 2021 flood disaster. With a Climate Adaptation Act, we are creating a framework for implementing a national climate adaptation strategy with measurable targets, for example in the fields of action of heat prevention, health and allergy prevention, and water infrastructure, together with the states, and for taking timely follow-up action. We will also get the first urgent measures underway very quickly with an immediate action program. We aim to anchor joint federal and state funding for climate prevention and climate adaptation and provide it with sufficient financial resources. We are creating more space for innovation, digitalization and private sector initiatives for climate adaptation. We see coastal and flood protection as a task for society as a whole and will strengthen the financial resources of the states and municipalities. We will create uniform federal standards for the assessment of flood and heavy rainfall risks and the creation and publication of hazard and risk maps. We are reviewing the catalog of exceptions for the approval of construction projects in designated floodplains and adjusting it where necessary with the aim of minimizing risks. We support private households with KfW funding for private flood and heavy rain prevention. We support municipalities in investing in climate resilience, particularly in climate-proof water infrastructure that takes account of extreme precipitation and low water. With unsealing projects, we strengthen rainwater infiltration and reduce the risks of flooding.

Water Conservation (Lines 1293-1296)

Together with the states, we are consistently and swiftly implementing the EU Water Framework Directive to protect water as a public good. We are swiftly implementing a national water strategy jointly supported by the federal and state governments with the goal of integrated water management. [...]

Soil conservation (lines 1325-1332)

We will evaluate the federal soil protection law and adapt it to the challenges of climate protection, climate adaptation, and the preservation of biodiversity, taking into account the different uses. At the EU level, we will advocate for improved soil protection and binding regulations. We will establish a national soil monitoring center. In order to reduce land consumption for settlement and transport purposes to the 30-ha target by 2030 at the latest, we will set incentives, avoid misguided incentives and reduce sealing through effective initiatives.

Land Policy (line 1520-1529)

BVVG land is used for compensation and replacement measures as well as climate and species protection. In this context, agricultural land is primarily leased to sustainable or ecological farms and not sold.

Infrastructure (lines 1562-1591)

[...] We are seeking a new infrastructure consensus on federal transportation routes. To this end, we will launch a dialogue process with transport, environmental, economic and consumer protection associations in parallel with the ongoing review of the requirements plan, with the aim of reaching an understanding on the priorities for implementing the current Federal Transport Infrastructure Plan. Pending the requirements plan review, there will be joint coordination on current projects. [...]

Climate Protection Act (line1800-1819)

We will consistently develop the Climate Protection Act before the end of 2022 and launch an immediate climate protection program with all necessary laws, regulations and measures. We will make climate protection a cross-cutting task by ensuring that the department in charge in each case examines its draft laws for their climate impact and compatibility with national climate protection targets and provides an appropriate justification (climate check).

All sectors will have to contribute: Transport, construction and housing, power generation, industry and agriculture. We will monitor compliance with the climate targets on the basis of a cross-sectoral and, analogous to the Paris Climate Agreement, multi-year overall account. The basis for this is annual monitoring. [...]

We will launch and complete an immediate climate protection program with all the necessary laws and projects by the end of 2022.

Renewable Energy (Lines 1821-1915)

We make it our shared mission to dramatically accelerate the expansion of renewables and remove all hurdles and barriers.

We are aligning our renewables target with a higher gross electricity demand of 680-750 TWh in 2030. Of this, 80 percent is to come from renewables. We are accelerating grid expansion accordingly. We are dynamically adjusting the annual tender volumes. [...]

We will significantly accelerate planning and approval procedures. Renewable energies are in the public interest and serve the security of supply. When weighing up the protected goods, we will ensure that renewable energies are given priority for a limited period of time until climate neutrality is achieved. We will create legal certainty in species protection law, among other things by applying a uniform nationwide assessment method in the species protection assessment of wind energy projects. Furthermore, we will advocate a stronger focus on population protection at the European level and make the exceptions legally secure.

We are committed to effectively relieving the regulatory authorities through the use of external project teams. The start of the statutory approval periods is to be ensured by clear requirements for the application documents. Clarification of the implementation deadlines for permits is also to be made.

All suitable roof areas are to be used for solar energy in the future. This is to become mandatory for new commercial buildings and the rule for new private buildings. We will remove bureaucratic hurdles and open up ways to avoid overburdening private builders financially and administratively. We also see this as an economic stimulus program for small and medium-sized businesses and the skilled trades.

Our target for the expansion of photovoltaics (PV) is around 200 GW by 2030. To achieve this, we will remove all obstacles, including speeding up grid connections and certification, adjusting compensation rates, and reviewing mandatory tenders for large rooftop systems and caps. We will also strengthen innovative solar energy such as agri- and floating PV and enable co-utilization.

Two percent of the state's land is to be designated for onshore wind energy. The details of the area target will be set out in the Building Code. We will strengthen the federal-state cooperation committee.

Before the end of the first half of 2022, we will initiate all necessary measures together with the federal government, the states and local authorities to organize the common goal of accelerating the expansion of renewables and making the necessary land available for this purpose.

We will ensure that wind energy expansion also makes significant progress in less windy regions so that onshore wind energy is also available close to consumption throughout Germany (and grid bottlenecks are avoided).

Where wind farms are already in place, it must be possible to replace old wind turbines with new ones without major approval effort. We want to defuse the conflict between wind power expansion and species protection through innovative technical avoidance measures, including anti-collision systems. We want to reduce the distances to rotating radio beacons and weather radars in the short term. In the designation of low-altitude corridors, greater consideration is to be given to the expansion of wind energy. [...]

Bioenergy in Germany should have a new future. To this end, we will develop a sustainable biomass strategy. [...]

We want to ensure that municipalities can benefit appropriately financially from wind energy plants and larger open-space solar plants on their territory. [...]

Networks (line 1986-2006)

Electricity and hydrogen grids are the backbone of the energy system of the future. For the massive expansion of renewable energies, we need more speed and commitment in grid expansion at all levels. In the future, we want to plan grid infrastructures more jointly and with greater foresight at all political levels. To this end, we will immediately commission the Federal Network Agency and network operators to calculate a plan for a climate-neutral network that goes beyond the current network development plans and update the Federal Requirements Plan accordingly. Particular attention must be paid to the electricity highways in all measures.

We will initiate further measures as part of the immediate climate protection program. We will accelerate the planning and approval processes for faster planning and implementation of electricity and hydrogen networks. We will ensure a clear allocation of political responsibility for good early citizen participation in grid expansion. [...]

Construction and Housing (lines 2960-2999)

Housing is a basic need and as diverse as people. We will make the building and housing of the future affordable, climate-neutral, sustainable, low-barrier, innovative, and with vibrant public spaces. In doing so, we are keeping an eye on the diversity of framework conditions and forms of living and the individual needs of people in rural and urban areas.

To this end, we are launching a new departure in construction, housing and urban development policy. Our goal is to build 400,000 new homes per year, including 100,000 publicly subsidized homes. To this end, we will continue the federal government's financial support for social housing construction, including social subsidies for owner-occupied homes, and increase funding. [...]

We will introduce a construction, housing cost and climate check. We want to help municipalities introduce potential land registers. We are continuing the work of the Construction Cost Reduction Commission as part of the Alliance. We will integrate the non-railroad properties of the Federal Railways into the Bundesanstalt für Immobilienaufgaben (BImA) and align the BImA with our construction, housing, urban development and ecological goals. We will give BImA more freedom and enable it to take out loans. In the future, BImA should be able to invest and build itself and continue to support municipal construction. To this end, we want to concentrate responsibility for the planning, construction and operation of federal buildings and federal real estate with the BImA.

Digitization and Simplification (Lines 3001-3020)

We will reduce the cost of housing through serial construction, digitization, de-bureaucratization, and standardization. We want to accelerate modular and serial construction and renovation through type approvals. We want to adapt the processes of standardization and standardization so that construction becomes less expensive.

We will support the construction and real estate industries as well as all levels of administration in mastering digitization, implementing Open-BIM and uniform interfaces/standards. The federal construction sector is a role model for digitization and our construction, housing and climate policy goals.

We will amend the German Building Code (BauGB) with the aim of applying its instruments even more effectively and straightforwardly, strengthening climate protection and adaptation, community orientation and internal development, as well as mobilizing additional building land and further accelerating planning and approval procedures. We will remove the time limit on the relevant provisions in the Building Land Mobilization Act and create the legal basis for the complete digitization of urban land use planning procedures. We will examine whether the ruling of the Federal Administrative Court of November 9, 2021, on the municipal right of first refusal in areas covered by a preservation statute (milieu protection statute) gives rise to a need for legislative action. We want to strengthen building research.

Urban Development (lines 3116-3149)

We want livable cities, towns, and rural regions throughout Germany and are guided by the New Leipzig Charter. We secure urban development funding permanently and increase it. Reducing GHG emissions and climate adaptation are key components. We lower the hurdles for financially weak municipalities and examine the possibilities of multi-year federal-state agreements. We want to make the existing support measures in the area of urban development more flexible and less bureaucratic and strengthen the institutions of building culture. We are further developing the smart city step-by-step plan, strengthening BIM Germany and establishing a smart city competence center. We want a mixed-use city.

To protect health, we want to take the entire noise situation into account in the future and will examine the introduction of an overall noise assessment. This could, for example, combine the impacts of road, rail and air traffic as well as industrial and commercial facilities. We will modernize the TA Lärm (Technical Instructions on Noise) and adapt it to the changed living conditions in inner cities in order to resolve conflicts of interest between noise protection and approaching residential development. [...]

We want to reform the Fee Structure for Architects (HOAI) and adapt the service profiles.

We are making the "Sustainable Inner Cities and Centers" program compatible with urban development funding.

We support municipalities in preventing and coping with heavy rainfall events and adapting to climate change. The flood disaster in the summer of 2021, particularly in the Ahr Valley and parts of North Rhine-Westphalia, impressively demonstrated to us the devastating consequences extreme weather can have. Together with the federal states, we will press ahead with reconstruction there with all our might.

We will back up the Federal Republic's sustainability target for land consumption with concrete measures. The provisions of Section 13b of the German Building Code (BauGB) will not be extended.

We are examining the introduction of an inner development measure area.

Sports (lines 3842-3875)

Sport thrives on volunteerism, strengthens social cohesion, and is a mediator for democratic values. We are drawing up a "Sports Development Plan" with broad participation and expanding the offensive for investment in sports facilities by municipalities and clubs, taking into account sustainability, accessibility and inclusion, and giving greater consideration to swimming pools in particular. In sports funding, we take into account the special needs of sports for the disabled. We continue to promote the relaunch of mass sports after Corona. [...]

Good living conditions in urban and rural areas (lines 4330-4438).

[...] We will further develop the all-German funding system and the funding programs bundled under this umbrella - oriented toward strengthening structurally weak regions. We will combine, simplify, make more flexible and harmonize support programs and prioritize the flow of funds to those areas where there is the greatest need to catch up. We will use federal funding to make the greatest possible contribution to climate protection and upgrading local infrastructure to make it barrier-free. Municipalities are to be advised on how to take advantage of funding programs. We will remove hurdles to the call for funds, for financially weak municipalities by reducing or replacing their own contributions. Unused funds will continue to be made available for specific purposes (over the course of the year) to support municipalities.

The federal and state governments have an equal responsibility to ensure equal living conditions in all regions. To this end, we will dynamically increase GRW and GAK funds each year. We want to expand the possibilities for infrastructure support in the GRW and GAK, make their applicability more flexible and ensure the multi-year transferability of funds. The special framework plan for rural development will be increased and expanded. We are examining a new funding category for "services of general interest in the region" within the GRW.

To strengthen cohesion, the investment and renovation programs in the area of sports and culture (e.g. sports facilities, swimming pools, libraries) will be simplified and increased. We want to gear funding to structural weaknesses.

We will support citizen participation in the responsibility of local self-government, e.g. in regional development concepts, regional management and regional budgets. [...]

We want to extend the participation of local and neighboring municipalities in the value creation for ground-mounted photovoltaic and onshore wind power plants to existing plants and will make it mandatory for new plants. We are examining financial instruments to increase acceptance in communities affected by transmission grid expansion. [...]

Within the framework of federal-state financial relations, we want to help municipalities solve the problem of old debts. [...]

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