German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ruling Christian Democratic party (CDU) has supported plans to raise meat prices to fight climate change.

The meat tax, initially proposed by the Social Democrats (SPD) and the Green Party, will sharply increase the prices of meat products by raising the tax rate from the current rate of 7 percent to 19 percent.

High prices will reduce carbon emissions by forcing Germans to cut on their meat consumption, top lawmakers believe. The move backed by German Agriculture Minister Julia Klöckner is part of a broader green agenda to fight climate change. Last month, the country’s Environment Minister Svenja Schulze proposed a carbon tax on German household to cut emissions.

The meat tax will hit poor German households the hardest. “More expensive meat might, in theory, reduce those numbers as some people cut their consumption to save money,” Reuters news agency concluded.

The radical proposal comes at a time when poverty is at its highest since the unification of Germany in 1990. Over 15 million Germans, roughly 20 percent of the population, “aren’t earning enough to pay their bills or adequately heat their homes,” a 2018 government study showed

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