Germany’s Battle Plan to Combat Climate Change: Close all Coal-Fired Power Plants
Germany took its next step to their continuous commitment to the Paris Agreement on climate change and announced their plans to shut down the remaining 84 coal-fired power plants by 2038. This ambitious shift from fossil fuels will cost at least $46 billion over the next 19-years. Germany is already underway switching to green energy by eliminating nuclear energy by 2022 and this move would see a shift into majority of the nation being powered by renewable energy sources.
After seven months of back and forth and a recent 21-hour negotiating session, the chairman of the 28-member government commission, Ronald Pofalla, announced that “there won’t be any more coal-burning plants in Germany by 2038”. If successful, this would be seen as a historic move for Europe’s largest nation that has been heavily dependent on coal energy. Claudia Kemfert, professor at DIW Berlin, said that “It’s also an important signal for the world that Germany is again getting serious about climate change: a very big industrial nation that depends so much on coal is switching it off.”
Current Energy Generation
As of 2018, lignite and hard coal generate some 45 gigawatts of energy generation. In
comparison alternative energy sources like wind and solar power combined have generated close to 100 gigawatts of energy. Onshore wind energy is the highest producer of energy resources followed by solar energy and a combination of hard and lignite coal with natural gas right behind.
The remaining energy at under 10 gigawatts, respectively, are generated through hydro power, biomass, offshore wind, mineral oil and nuclear power. If remaining on track and shutting down the remaining nuclear plants by 2022, the 9.5 gigawatts generated would need to increased in other sectors.
Battles to Come
There are however disagreements as to which plants should be taken offline first. The coal industry wants to keep the most profitable and newest plants open the longest however the government wants to close those plants first. The reason for this is because in order to protect jobs and closing older plants using lignite, a soft form of coal which causes much pollutants, those plants are located in deprived regions of the country where the loss of jobs would cripple the local area.
Another area of concern is how to use the $45 billion of taxpayer money to help the states affected by the closure. Even though it is an ambitious goal, the 19-years allocated might not be enough time to reach it. Much of the specifics have yet to be planned out and can cause speed bumps along the way.
The world is quickly changing and Plug It In Solar can help you change with the world through solar energy . Serving the Los Angeles area since 2015, our amazing team is eager to talk to you about the advantages of solar energy and how you can save money with solar. Call us today at (818) 670-7769 and lets discuss how we can change the world together.