Today in Germany For Members

Today in Germany: A roundup of the latest news on Monday

DPA/The Local
DPA/The Local - [email protected]
Today in Germany: A roundup of the latest news on Monday
Steam comes out of a chimney of an HKM gas-fired power plant of the HKM in Duisburg, western Germany. The energy industry is advising people to use less gas this winter. (Photo by Ina FASSBENDER / AFP)

From officials recommending people limit their gas consumption this winter to young SPD members calling for a basic inheritance of €60,000, here's a roundup of the latest news in Germany on Monday.


Limit gas usage, energy officials advise

Gas storage facilities may be full at the moment, but the head of the German Association of Energy and Water Industries energy BDEW Kerstin Andreae is still asking people in Germany to limit their gas usage, where possible. 

Whilst temperatures are currently mild for this time of year, if it were to become really cold for a couple of months, storage facilities could empty by the end of January and wouldn't be able to be refilled until March.

"The lower the consumption, the lower the costs and the higher the energy security," she said.

The head of Germany's network regulator BNA Klaus Müller agreed, suggesting that families think about whether everyone needs the same temperature in every room or whether the heating can be turned down.

"We are already a sixth of the way through winter. And so far it's going well," he said.

READ ALSO: Good news for German households as energy prices set to drop

Young Socialists in the SPD demand basic inheritance of €60,000 for all over-18s

Young Socialists in the SPD – Jusos – voted in favour of a basic inheritance of €60,000 for everyone over the age of 18 at their national congress on Sunday in Braunschweig.

"We need a consistent redistribution from the top to the bottom," said one delegate, while another added "there are very few people who are wealthy today who worked for it". 


The young SPD members' concept aims to equalise opportunities for success and would see a payout of €60,000 to everyone turning 18 who has their main residence in Germany, regardless of their residency status.

The money should not have to be used for a specific purpose and people should not need to apply to get a payout either – it should be paid automatically.

Needless to say, the cost of this would be huge – around €45 billion a year, according to the Jusos – and would be financed by inheritance tax reform.

Germany network agency sues mobile firms for bad connectivity 

The Federal Network Agency is taking action against Germany's mobile phone network operators Deutsche Telekom, Telefónica (O2) and Vodafone for the first time due to the ongoing weaknesses in mobile communications.

The need for court action is "due to culpable failure to fulfil the coverage requirements in full and on time", the agency states in a letter obtained by DPA.

Specially, the case relates to 500 gaps in the 4G network where none of the three mobile providers are able to offer connection speeds of 100MB or more. 

The proceedings, which were opened in September, have not yet been publicised, but the companies are currently being given the opportunity to submit comments.

A new 5G network mast in Düsseldorf.

A new 5G network mast in Düsseldorf. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Roberto Pfeil

In separate proceedings initiated at the same time, the mobile providers are also threatened with penalty payments. A decision will be made next year. 

The grid operators are of the opinion that they have not violated the expansion requirements because of the so-called 'exception rule'. This rule states that in places where the expansion was not possible for legal and factual reasons - for example, because nobody wanted to rent a plot of land on which a radio mast could be erected - the requirement is deemed to have been met even without a network.

READ ALSO: Fact check: Is Germany's internet really that bad?

However, the Network Agency claim that this justification does not apply in many cases - and that antennas could have been installed in certain regions after all. 

Trial of Ratingen high-rise explosion suspect to begin this week

A 57-year-old man from Ratingen near Düsseldorf will go on trial this Friday. He is suspected of having poured petrol on emergency services before setting them on fire at a residential high-rise block six months ago.

READ ALSO: Police and firefighters injured in explosion in North Rhine-Westphalia

He faces charges of nine counts of attempted murder at the Düsseldorf Landgericht (district court).

Police officers, fire brigade officials and emergency service workers were engulfed in a fireball on the tenth floor, leaving five of them fighting for their lives for weeks.


The police had been in attendance at the block due to concerns for the safety of a 91-year-old tenant, who turned out to be the mother of the suspect.  

The 57-year-old is said to be prone to conspiracy theories and had built up a large supply of food, but his motive remains unclear. 

A separate trial will determine whether the death of a 73-year-old man in another apartment in the block was caused by the police operation or the 57-year-old suspect.


Join the conversation in our comments section below. Share your own views and experience and if you have a question or suggestion for our journalists then email us at [email protected].
Please keep comments civil, constructive and on topic – and make sure to read our terms of use before getting involved.

Please log in to leave a comment.

Alex 2023/11/20 08:55
Perhaps Universal Basic Income would be a more sensible option to aim for than a once off lump sum?

See Also