Speaking at a press conference in the Chancellery, Angela Merkel thanked the two men for their willingness to take on the task of advising her government. Climate change and energy efficiency are declared focuses of the German EU and G8 presidencies.
"The climate change conference in Nairobi made it clear that we have no time to lose. We need to act now. The Kyoto agreement will end in 2012. The EU needs to assume a leading role once again with a view to achieving a good follow-on agreement," Merkel said.
The government's new advisers are established experts in their fields. Schellnhuber and Josefsson are widely respected and together provide a broad range of expertise that should adequately cover the spectrum of issues that could arise with regard to climate change and energy efficiency.
Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber
Schellnhuber is a physicist and director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK). The institute's approach is interdisciplinary, studying the environmental, economic, and social impact of climate change.
Schellnhuber already has some experience advising the government in his capacity as deputy chairman of the National Scientific Council on Global Environmental Change (WBGU).
As a leading scientist in his field he is highly sought after as a guest professor at universities around the world.
>> Hans Joachim Schellnhuber
Lars Göran Josefsson
Josefsson is president of Swedish energy giant Vattenfall and supervisory board chairman of Vattenfall Europe. It is the company's declared objective, Josefsson says, to become the world's number one energy supplier in the area of environmental protection.
For Josefsson climate change is an undeniable fact. He sees the avoidance of climate change as being in the interest of mankind in general and in the interest of industry in particular. Global warming will have an economic impact. A study compiled by Sir Nicholas Stern, an adviser to the British government, showed that failure to take preventive action could result in economic losses amounting to no less than five percent of global GNP.
Josefsson has sent out a signal with Vattenfall's 3C initiative, "Curbing Climate Change".
>> Lars Göran Josefsson