The Sustainability Council
The German Council for Sustainable Development (RNE) is an advisory body mandated by and reporting back to the German Federal Government. Appointed ad personam by Chancellor Angela Merkel for a three-year term the 15 members are free to set their agenda. The RNE was first established in April 2001 by then Chancellor Gerhard Schröder. Its work is facilitated by a General Secretary and his staff.
The RNE seeks to make sustainable development a fundamental goal and field of action in all areas of the political sphere. It works towards citizens living a sustainable lifestyle and towards a broad public discussion on sustainability. It urges businesses and institutions to make their economic activities sustainable, to face the challenges posed by sustainability and to make use of its opportunities. The RNE seeks to broaden the discussion on sustainability within society and to make the outcomes of this more effective and more binding.
What is sustainable development?
Sustainable development entails treating environmental aspects on an equal footing with social and economic aspects. Making this abundantly clear is one of the Council’s missions. Future-oriented management means that we have to leave future generations a globally intact ecological, social and economic system. The one cannot be achieved without the others.
Sustainability policy in Germany
The German Sustainable Development Strategy gives sustainable development concrete shape through its goals and indicators and in so doing offers long-term orientation for sustainability policy in Germany. Various institutions – including the RNE – are tasked with ensuring that the principle of sustainability is applied throughout the federal government’s work.